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The Twelve Donuts of Christmas

Dear members and constituents,
For the last Donut Friday of the year, I thought it would be appropriate to celebrate the Holiday Spirit with a Cheerful (and familiar) tune. So put on your elf caps, pull up your snow boots and sing along with me. Ready?

On the 12th day of Christmas my true love gave to me a baker's dozen, 11 sprinkled donuts, 10 apple fritters, nine maple bars, eight powder bizmarks, seven chocolate covered, six Boston cream-filled, five donut holes, four sour cream, three cake donuts, two bear claws and hot and gooey Krispy Kreme glazed. If this doesn't make you hungry, I don't know what will. So come on down and make your holiday season bright with a delicious donut of your choosing, courtesy of Sara Baack (donut girl)
Happy Friday!

Donut Warmth Counteracts Global Cooling

Dear Members and Constituents,
How are you holding-up in the single digit weather? When it gets this cold, I find that the sign in front of the number (+ or -) is not all that meaningful to me. No matter how you spin it, it's cold! Almost makes me whish hibernation were an option. On the bright side, climate engineering –be it at home, our vehicles or places of work—makes it possible for us to spend most of the day comfortably oblivious to the brutal conditions outside. That’s why I’m delighted our planet's leaders are in Copenhagen this very moment discussing climate engineering on a larger scale. By the way, do you think there is a hidden agenda behind the fact this conference happens in the winter? I mean… seriously, it’s like holding a convention to end world hunger at a liposuction clinic or a gathering of vegetarians at Burger King. Whatever our fearless leaders’ motives or timing, they’re there. Better late than never, I say.

Speaking of which, John Schoder (donut boy) ha…

It's Friday, There's Donuts... it's a Party!

Dear Members and Constituents,
Who decided parties were the norm for the Holidays? Clearly not the puritanical pilgrims or the tea-totaling temperance movement. When you think about it, being cold in a manger (Christmas), fighting a battle (Hanukah) or starving yourself (Ramadan) are not that festive. It may be the pagans celebrating the Saturnalia, or the Kwanzaa folks who can take the credit (what do they celebrate again?). Perhaps it’s the desire to warm your heart in this cold, cold time of year or the human propensity to enjoy a good party (whatever the pretext may be). In any event, I’m always glad to attend a good Christmas party. I am also glad David Panzer (donut boy) has a made a savory selection of delicious LaMar’s donuts for us today. So, warm your heart with a hot beverage of your choice… and have yourself a merry little donut too!
Happy Friday!

Have a Virtual Donut on Me...

Dear Members and Constituents,
Staring into their crystal balls, pundits see 3D TV as the next big step for the medium. A couple of steps down the road they envision holographic TV (like 3D TV, except the person sitting next to you sees a different angle of the image than you do). While both of these technologies sound pretty cool, neither can begin to do a donut (or any food for that matter) justice. To be fully enjoyed, a donut must be physically present. Unfortunately, none of the pundits are putting teleportation on the roadmap just yet. I can envision it now. Donuts for everyone (even on black Friday). Can you imagine the bandwidth it would take to deliver a donut to each of you (instead of this lousy 2D replica)? I’d speculate we’re talking terabits, perhaps even petabits (which, when added together, would make the term “exaflood” a laughable relic of the past). Granted, there would probably be “low resolution” teleportation available –which might be adequate for simple objects o…

Come Browse our Donut Selection

Dear Members and Constituents,
You may have heard Microsoft is launching version 9 of Internet Explorer. Nine! That’s a lot of versions. I will show my age a little by admitting that, at the time, I thought Microsoft could never take-on Netscape in the browser space. I suppose there is something to be said for giving your competitor’s lifeblood product away while integrating it to your dominant operating system. Then again, Nescape’s demise may have been precipitated by the shape of their logo. If you look at all the successful browsers in the market today, they all have one thing in common: their logos are fashioned after the donut. In hindsight, I suppose the writing was on the wall.

I would understand if you’re a little skeptical. After all, how important can a logo’s shape be? Well, let us see… Ford and Toyota have donut-inspired logos. GM and Chrysler do not. JP Morgan Chase and the Bank of New York have donut-inspired logos (and have repaid TARP). AIG, BofA and Citi Group do not …

Experimental Donuts

Dear Members and Constituents,
I’d like you to bear with me as I conduct a brief experiment. Ready? Close your eyes and… ok… just realized you need to keep them open in order to read this. So, with your eyes open, take a slow, deep breath. Hold it for a few seconds. That’s it. Now -yes- slowly exhale. Repeat. Did you feel it? If you humored me and followed my instructions to the letter, that means you’re alive. You’re alive! So what’s the big deal? (you may be asking yourself). Put aside the obvious fact that it beats the alternative and think of all the things being alive enables you to enjoy.

Here are a few things on my list:
• The taste warm oatmeal raisin cookies
• Stimulating intellectual discussions
• Lactic acid build-up the day after a longer-than-usual hike
• Anticipation for a long-awaited encounter
• The smell of freshly cut pine (speaking of which, my kids’ High School is having a fund raiser, so I’m selling garlands and wreaths again this year – sign-up sheet is at my desk tod…

Meta-Physical Donuts

Dear Members and Constituents,
“Why am I here?”, “How did it all begin?”, “What’s the best donut?” These are the big questions. If the answers were obvious and incontrovertible, the list would be comprised of other questions. Given the complexity, lack of hard evidence and subjectivity involved, it’s no surprise we don’t all agree on an answer (often, we don’t even have one). Over-simplification and false trade-offs only make matters worse. Case-in-point: the debate over science vs. religion. C’mon, really? Can’t they both be right? Science deals in the natural; religion in the super-natural. Two complementary –not contradictory—realms. With so many moving parts, it’s tempting to make a false assumption, cling to easy answers and avoid the topic. Once you’ve discarded the truth as a likely possibility, all you’re left with is a thick broth of wrong answers to stew in. It’s no wonder these questions have been around so long (some longer than others, after all, donuts were only invented…

I'm Dreaming of a White Halloween

Dear Members and Constituents,
How about that weather we’ve been having? From cream-puff tree tops to rocky road ice cream streets to TV static on the scenery... it’s all quite surreal! We’ve skipped red and sepia and gone straight to arctic shades of white. I'm having a hard time picturing the pointy hatted Winchells and green monsters from the black LaMar's freezing their sticky buns off as they make the obligatory door-to-door pilgrimage for sweets. I'm still trying to decide whether it’s a trick my eyes are playing on me or a treat for ski aficionados (perhaps it’s both).

If fall sped by too quickly, the current donut rotation did not. Austin Hurt (our newest "donut boy") puts a golden finishing touch to the cycle Julian Kiss began in August of last year. Quite a trick to pull-off. So go ahead, treat yourself to a delicious donut and appease that monstrous craving. If you don't, it might haunt you all week.

Happy Friday!

Sprinkles on Donuts and Whipped Cream on Coffee

Dear Members and Constituents,
What is it about the wrong things that makes them feel so right? The allure of the forbidden and dangerous is something a rational mind should easily overcome. Yet, quite often, we don’t. Like a moth flying into a 1,500 watt light bulb at the World Series, we want things that can harm us. As I was contemplating this apparent contradiction, my thoughts started coalescing to the tune of “My favorite things”, from “the Sound of Music”. Take it away, Julie Andrews…

From trans-fats to sugars to way-too-large servings
Speeding while texting and dangerously swerving
Flirting with girls, who knows where that might lead?
Being so bad might just lead to fatigue

Drinking a bottle of scotch while time passes
Hot girls in tight clothes, I look at their… glasses
Smoking a stogie or two, what the heck
Living the good life with debt ‘round my neck

Minding my business ignoring the needy
While others go hungry I just get more greedy
Yell at co-workers who get on my nerves
Put-off del…

Friday Donut Club Re-Charter

Dear Members and Constituents,
It’s been 14 months since we launched the current donut rotation and I must admit it was beginning to feel like a Bernie Madoff pyramid scheme. Alas, like yesterday’s helium-filled experimental aircraft which (fortunately) was not carrying 6 year old Falcon, this rotation is finally coming to a soft landing. As has become customary, I will be creating the new rotation over the next couple of weeks. In order to ensure a continuous Friday supply of donuts I would like those of you whose name appears on the “To” line to check your calendars and inform me of any known scheduling conflicts you have between now and, well… 2011 (!?!). Now may be a good time to plan for all those vacation days you never end-up having time for.

In order to help you think more clearly, Greg Friedman (donut boy) has delivered five dozen delicious Winchell’s donuts to my desk. Grab a couple as you contemplate your future recreational activities. Happy Friday!

To Do-nut List

Dear Members and Constituents,
You know that item that’s been on your to-do list for far too long? We all have them. From Mr. Obama taking his sweet time deciding how many troops to add in Afghanistan to the college kid pulling an all-nighter to do that project assigned three months ago. We all have our reasons. It may be because you can’t decide what the right course of action is; it may be you’ve been letting it soak, in order to think it through thoroughly or it may simply be you’ve been dreading doing it. Whatever the reason, it’s important enough to still be on the list and chances are, it’s not going to take care of itself. You know the one. I challenge you to do it today. Why not make it your goal for the day to cross-off that one item from the list? You know you’ll feel better when you do.

Need more than just one challenge today? Here’s another: decide whether you’ll have a Krispy Kreme or a LaMar’s donut this morning. This latter challenge comes courtesy of Cheryl Hennesey (do…

A Sign of the Times

Dear Members and Constituents,
Have you ever wondered whether the Universe is trying to tell you something? I’m not going to try to chime-in on whether divine intervention helped atoms partner into molecules, making organic compounds which self-arrange into amino acids to form proteins assembling strands of DNA, creating cells that partnered with each other to form us. Whether or not you believe in the divine, chances are you wonder (or at least I do) whether there are subliminal messages all around, waiting just for you. This narcissistic tendency to read “tea leaves”, if you will, manifests itself in many unexpected ways. For example, I’ve been seeing my initials in a disproportionate percentage of license plates lately. Each time that happens, I wonder whether the plate that reads 639-JPF means my son Francisco (the “F” on this actual license plate) and I will be nine minutes late to our 6:30 appointment. (6:39). Who knows? What I do know is that if those are truly messages meant fo…

Donut Mix-Up (Better Late Than Never)

Dear members and constituents,
I was driving into the office this morning, imagining the e-mail I would write comparing home-made bombs to donuts when it hit me: nobody has donut duty this morning. It had been nagging in the back of my mind for two weeks and exploded into my consciousness as I attempted to recall donut boy or girl's name. Farfetched similarities and contrasts would have to take a back seat as I made a U-turn on Eldorado Blvd and headed off to LaMar's. Fortunately texting and driving are still a legal combination at red lights, so I could craft the bulk of this note en-route. The circumstances why I had to become emergency donut boy are a long story, and donuts are late enough as-is, so without further delay, come and get them!
Happy Friday!

Popular Names

Dear Members and Constituents,
The second most popular boy’s name in London is Daniel. Not what I’d expect, but then again, not a huge surprise (must be the clouds in my eyes). The most popular name, on the other hand, was a surprise. London’s #1 boys’ name is coincidentally the most popular male name worldwide. Dare to take a guess? Here’s a clue: one in every 200 men around the globe is believed to go by some variant of the name (give or take a few vowels). Give up? It’s Mohammed (or Muhammad or Mohammad or… you get the idea). And to think that despite having three boys of my own the name never remotely crossed my mind as a candidate.

I would have expected something more like Peter, Paul or Mary (these may, however, be the most popular names in the land called Honalee -- to which Mary has now departed at the age of 72). What’s the most popular name for the circular pastries we enjoy on Fridays? Do-nut ask me that question, for I donut know the answer. What I do know is Tracy Holi…

Original as Daylight

Dear Members and Constituents,
Why is it so hard to be original? I would argue we borrow things we’ve heard or read because it’s efficient. I’m not talking about outright plagiarism here, just thought “recycling”. It has been the path of least resistance long before mass media’s pervasive spread of homogeneous messages. It’s a natural progression. Letters are recycled into words. Words are recycled into sentences (George Carlin’s brilliant illustration comes to mind– speaking gibberish so as to say something in his “own words”). Naturally, this progresses into recycled sentences, thoughts and opinions. It’s easy, comfortable and safe. We are adept at recycling thoughts, appropriating and calling them our own. My hope is, each of us is building on this familiar foundation and adding to it (not just re-arranging the pieces).

Today, as is the case most Fridays, we have a familiar sight: five dozen donuts. We also have a twist of originality. Alissa Baan (donut girl) on her debut delights u…

D.O.N.U.T.s are Here

Dear Members and Constituents,
What is it about telecommunications and acronyms? Every chance we get we Abbreviate Confusing Random Obfuscating Names Increasing Murkiness (ACRONIM). It seems like we are Deliberately Unclear Mumbling Businessmen (DUMB). Fortunately, I am Outside Frolicking Free (OFF) today, otherwise I too would be throwing-out more than my fair share of Jive Apparently Rooted in Greek Originated Names (JARGON). In any event, I hope you have a Lovely And Beautiful Outdoor Ritual Doing Anything Youthful (LABOR DAY)

Speaking of acronyms, three dozen Deliciously Outrageous Nutritious Ultimate Treats (DONUTs) have arrived, courtesy of Irina Khanin (donut girl). Stop by and enjoy one in my name.
Happy Friday!

Decide Which Donut You Will Pursue

Dear Members and Constituents,
You can be anything you want (within reason), but you can’t be everything you want. Your time, energy and focus are limited resources which, if applied towards a narrow set of goals, can get you quite far in that direction. It’s a natural temptation –and a common mistake– to try to do it all. Like butter on toast, it is possible to spread yourself so thinly no perceptible flavor is left. This is true of any endeavor where resources are limited –arguably, everything in life. Whether it’s career choices, IT projects or weekend activities, you can only do so many… well. A strategy to decide what to do (and, perhaps more importantly, what not to do) is of utmost importance. I think you know what I’m talking about. We’ve all, at some point in our lives, agreed to attend three parties the same night –and enjoyed none of them. Granted, you must beware of false trade-offs (but that’s a topic for another day)

Anything worth doing is worth doing well. Which, in turn…

Fear of Donut Holes

Dear Members and Constituents,
What do you fear? Is it unemployment, rejection, spiders or the dark? Perhaps you have a fear of heights, death or outhouses… As I look back on my formative years, my biggest fear was that of obscurity or, worse, mediocrity (with vampires a close second – I was an adult before I stopped wrapping my sheets around my neck to prevent midnight bites). Back then, I fancied myself becoming a renaissance man; a Leonardo DaVinci for our times. That dream has drifted over time, going from renaissance man to successful entrepreneur, to corporate executive, to… mmm… (hopefully not an acronym for Mediocre Middle Manager).To be clear, the mediocrity I feared was synonymous with “ordinary” or “average” –not “inferior” or “poor”. On my report card, I figured “B” stood for “blemish” (which, by extension, meant “C” was for “cringe” and “D” a “disaster”). The problem is, of course, that the odds are stacked against you. Even if you’re one-in-a-million, there …

They're Here! (Donuts and JP)

Dear Members and Constituents,
What a week. I’ve been to Ecuador, tested the limits of how little sleep I can have and still be operational and managed to get back in time for Donut Friday (okay, okay so I’m defining my timeliness loosely –it is, after all, 8:23- but I’m here!). My, how time flies when you’re trying to break a new record on how thinly you can spread yourself.

Today marks the debut in the Friday Donut Club of another person notorious for allowing little time for very long trips. Suffice it to say she recently traveled to South Africa to watch a cricket match. I’m talking about Sneha, who delights us today with a delectable selection of delicious LaMar’s donuts. Come and get them before they all fly away.
Happy Friday!

Adds Zest to Glazed, Bizmark and Cake

Dear Members and Constituents,
Back in mid-June, I tipped my hat to a product team (the Voice and Stuff girls), in recognition for the valuable work they perform. My singling-out a product team was a likely occurrence. You see, the majority of FDC members (56%) are in the Product Management organization. This should come as no surprise, after all, 32C is a pod dominated by product-types. The organization with the second largest representation, however, is not as intuitive: nearly one in every five FDC members (19%) is in Offer Management. These die-hard fans of the donut travel from the far reaches of our campus (mostly 34C) to get their Friday fix. Within this broad category, one group in particular stands-out: Carrier Markets. 5 members of this 7 person team are of the donut persuasion. Not only are these folks able to get into the heads of our largest customers, they are also able to handle the largest Friday morning donut commutes. It does not matter whether it’s a PTT or a Kripy K…

Rainbows and Donuts

Dear Members and Constituents,
As the rain poured down on my drive home last night I saw it. A bright, glowing, complete rainbow. Amidst the rain, there it was. A product of the moisture breaking-down the light into its component wavelengths, reminding me the sun would come-up tomorrow. While I was watching it, it hit me. Red is on top and violet on the bottom of the rainbow. Yet we use the term "INFRAred" to name frequencies beyond red and "ULTRAviolet" for those beyond violet. Infra means below, however red is on the top. Likewise Ultra means above, yet violet is on the bottom. And what’s with the naming convention inconsistency anyway? Infra’s corresponding prefix would be Supra…

Fortunately, as promised by the rainbow, the sun did come up this morning (and there was no need to bet my bottom dollar). Now, picture, if you will Shirley Jane Temple singing… this morning, this morning, there’s donuts you this morning, they’re here, not a day away (thanks to Bill Long,…

Life is Good (So are Donuts)

Dear Members and Constituents,
How often are you reminded life is good? It could be the cool morning air caressing your skin or the sense there’s a huge world out there waiting to be explored by you. Perhaps it’s a good night’s sleep or an accomplishment that eases you into this comfort zone. It could be the anticipation of a long awaited event or just the fact you’ve given yourself the time to breathe in the air and fill your lungs full to the brim as you slowly exhale. The walk up that hill that releases your endorphins, the glance at the beautiful person next to you that makes your heart skip a beat, the smell that triggers that fleeting childhood memory. The innocent hug from a child. Sometimes it seems all too easy to forget life is indeed good! (I won’t go through the litany of distractions that prevent us from enjoying life as designed).

Today, Jill Daugherty (donut girl) provides another reminder to feel right as rain. Donuts. Dozens of delectable donuts decorate my desk. So dro…

Voting (buttons) for superior J.O.E.

Irony [ahy-ruh-nee] the use of words to convey a meaning that is the opposite of its literal meaning Dear Members and Constituents,
I’d like to meet the marketing professional at Sara Lee Corporation who came-up with the name “Superior Coffee” (you know, the stuff in our break room). This person must have (1) a dark sense of humor (2) cojones the size of Alaska and/or (3) lost all touch with reality. Grab a bag and you’ll read it’s not just “Superior”, it’s the “World’s Finest”. But wait, the irony does not end there. The marketing spin goes-on to claim: “It matters. Every pot of coffee brewed. Every sip of coffee tasted. That’s why we put our passion for coffee into every cup you pour. It’s mattered to us since 1908. Superior Coffee. Every cup counts.” Wow! That’s the kind of stuff that gives marketing a bad rap. And yet, we drink it (at least I do). Why? Two words: convenience (it’s there) and cost (the price is right). I think the time is right for a social experiment (inspired by re…

Mid-Summer Morning Dream

Dear Members and Constituents,

The morning's delightful
the day's not too hot
this note may be artful
or maybe it's not

The economy is scary
but trends seem more stable
it has people weary
though food's on most tables

And speaking of eating
the donuts are ready
so stop all that reading
and plot a new heading

For Carlos Belloso
brought five dozen donuts
each one looks "hermoso" (beautiful in Spanish)
now come-on, get on it!

Happy Friday!

Sweeter than a Friday Donut

Dear Members and Constituents,
The holiday weekend is half-a-day away. We all know what's coming... Weenies are hiding in a dark corner of your fridge hoping they can avoid being grilled. Fire crackers are sure to loose their temper and blow-up over starry skies. Life is sweet! You can almost feel that drop of condensed water falling off your ice-cold brew and rolling onto your cheek as you wipe your brow and contemplate the possibilities. Life is sweeter!! And, donuts are here. Life is sweetest!!!

You'd think it would be impossible to improve on that good feeling. You'd be wrong. There is one sure way to add to that feeling of overall goodness and that is to do something good for someone else. You might, for instance, sponsor Dee Jones' 157 mile bike ride to raise funds for the Children's Hospital. She's dedicating her ride on the 2009 Courage Classic to 3 1/2 year old Cullen McReynolds (pictured). Less than a month ago Cullen was diagnosed with Neuroblastoma, a…

They Happen in Threes - So Have Three Donuts

Dear Members and Constituents,
Why does the death of celebrities touch us? I never met the recently departed batch. Never shook their hand or got their autograph. Was never in the same room with them, yet they touched my life by providing a soundtrack for my awkward teenage years, eye candy for my bedroom wall and comic relief for a late night or two. I think our shock and sense of loss is not about them. It's about ourselves. It's a realization of our own mortality. Parts of our lives are gone and even these iconic figures were not immune from death. If cancer, cardiac arrest or chronological age can catch-up to the rich and famous, why should it spare us? Obviously, it won't. However, the good news is it hasn't yet. Life is potential. Life is hope. Life is short. It's a gift which we so often keep stored in a box, waiting for someday. In their own way, each of these celebrities took life and ran with it each day. They applied themselves excelled at their chosen pr…

Sugar, Spice and Everything Nice

Dear Members and Constituents,
Change has been in the air this week. Literally. Hail, tornadoes, donuts are late... when did Denver become East Kansas anyway? In keeping with this theme -change- I thought I'd depart from my usual discourse and give recognition to some special folks who deserve it (for a change). Seriously, have you noticed we are surrounded by a disproportionate share of talented people? (which, of course, I take for granted). Today I will focus on just three such folks: the local voice product team, or as I like to call them... the Voice and Stuff Girls (any similarity to a syndicated cartoon that's been around for many years is quite intentional).
Averaging a product each, these deceivingly sweet ladies drive a tough bargain, single-handedly maintaining order over their domain.They effortlessly enable communications (providing a bridge to the public telephone network) and ensure public safety (enabling 9-1-1 calling) without even breaking a sweat. Alright, so …

More than just a Fifth Anniversary Donut (FAD)

Dear Members and Constituents,
Today marks the first day of the sixth year the Friday Donut Club has been in existence. Happy fifth anniversary! We've come a long way. What started as a hare-brained idea embraced by a rag-tag band of 15 donut fans in 31A (the bunker) is now a vibrant company-wide tradition boasting 57 members from across the far reaches of the Interlocken campus. During this time we have been proud to have 92 donut fans come through our ranks (64 of whom are still with Level 3, although 7 have decided to stop partaking at the donut table). We are on our 10th (and largest by far) rotation which, due to the inclusion of four Friday holidays, will have spanned a 14 month period from start to finish (currently slated for October 16). That's well over a year! Besides myself, two other original members remain faithful to the donut cause (and two more remain with Level 3, however, they no longer enjoy the weekly sweet taste of donuts in their lips every Friday morning…

Donut Debutante

Dear Members and Constituents, I returned from a week-long vacation to South Florida yesterday (I had to make it back in time for Donut Friday). While I was there, three things caught my eye: 1. Dime-a-dozen multi-million dollar mansions. Convertible roofs, marble sea walls and humungous yachts. You imagine it, there's probably a place out there that has it. Keeping-up with the Jonses takes on a whole new order of magnitude down there. If you're looking for a starter home, I saw a $3.2 Million two bedroom, one bath place in Fort Lauderdale you could tear-down to build your palatial mansion.
2. Disney parks up the ying yang. From Epcot to Hollywood Studios to the Magic Kingdom (and that's just some of the Disney parks), who knew there was such a large market for amusement? It's a small world after all. 3. Dunkin Donuts in just about every corner. I kid you not. They're everywhere. Which makes me believe Denver must be a drearily under-penetrated donut market -either …

Dangling Donut

Dear Members and Constituents,
During a hallway conversation yesterday morning, something dawned on me: the NBA playoffs are like the electoral college system. You can have the majority of the points (or votes) and still loose the series (or election). Our Denver Nuggets trail the series 3-2 despite having outscored the Lakers 520-515. Yeah, yeah, I know, cry me an Al Gore. Fortunately, although I am traveling to Florida this afternoon, none of the games take place there. As for the outcome of this series, I believe the Nuggets are ideally positioned to take game 6 at home tonight and use that momentum to beat LA at the Staples Center on Sunday. You're welcome to your opinion, that is mine and I'm sticking to it. As for the experts, what do they know anyway? Destiny calls.

Not convinced? Here's more proof. This is Matt Hawthorne's first time as donut boy. This would also be the Nuggets' first time at the finals (the Lakers have been 29 times). Matt's debut. The N…

Dunkin' Nuggets

Dear Members and Constituents,
How about them Denver Nuggets? Challenging the LA Lakers for the NBA Western Conference title! Granted, game 1 was a heartbreaker -loosing by a basket after leading for most of the game, however, we stole home court advantage last night in an equally contested game 2. Go Nuggets all the way! Alright, I have a confession to make. I jumped on the bandwagon this week. Don't get me wrong, It was fun to witness Chauncey pass the ball to himself off of Kobe's back to get a layup (does Bryant get credited with an assist on the play?). And, yes, I enjoy watching Carmelo Anthony dunk the ball as much as the next guy. That is, I WOULD enjoy watching IF the games were being broadcast by a local TV station (or my basic cable tier, for that matter). Seriously, when did the NBA conference finals become something you need premium cable to watch? Has the NBA fallen so low big television networks won't touch it with a 10 foot pole? (I know there's a clever…

For the Love of Donuts

Dear Members and Constituents,
Perhaps it's the fact Spring is in full swing or it may be that every-other song on the radio seems to mention it. Whatever the reason, there's a four letter word on my mind today. Love. Specifically, I've been wondering whether the love I have for donuts is the same as the love I have for my wife (just a difference of degree -I love Mónica more) or, are we really talking about two distinct verbs? (a difference of kind).

Hollywood would have us believe love is just an emotion. You look across the room and everything else dims next to the object of your affection. Love sweeps you off your feet, takes over your senses and overshadows reason. Love feels good. In this pop-culture context, you love what's attractive, appealing, astounding, appetizing or awesome. Butterflies flutter in your stomach, nerves tingle, knees are weak. If this is all there is to love, then I'd have to say my love for donuts is of the same kind as my love for my wif…

Donut Achievement

[posted by Chris Hynes] Our beloved Donut Sage is out today (teaching kids for Junior Achievement…what a guy!) but, fortunately, the sumptuous Friday treats are still here at the regular place.

Have a great weekend!
~*~*~*~*~*

Dear Members and Constituents,
I've found myself doing a double-take over the cadence of certain word combinations coming-up at random on news media this week. You already knew I was easily amused, however, you might be surprised at the extent of my affliction. So, without further pomp or fanfare, here are some of the phrases which took me on a tangent:
Yemeni Ticket. Flying first class to Yemen? [when you wish upon a star, terrorists won't go too far...] Death Row Lull. Colorado is looking to abolish the death sentence [making Aqualung the de-facto highest punishment in the land] Swine Flu. In a policy reversal the administration asked schools to remain open when the disease is detected [we'll have a global pandemic when pigs fly... well, swine flew yet …

May Day (not Mayday)

Dear Members and Constituents,
May is here and promises to bring the flowers that are a fruit of the April showers (although some showers threaten to carry over from April into this weekend). Poetry is in the air, so you will bear with me as I indulge in the spirit of the season.

The days in May,
some people say
are filled with promise
of a new way

The air is sweet
it can't be beat
I really don't miss
the Winter sleet

Now Ronald Cook
played by the book
if you ask me
the donuts look

hand selected
and none neglected
with careful glee
and taste delected

They are a hit,
here ends my wit
you don't agree?
well that's tough... come eat

Happy Friday!

The Word is Flat

Dear Members and Constituents,

Is flat good or bad? When Thomas Friedman stated "the world is flat", he redefined the arcane notion of a non-spherical world and changed it to mean a level playing field, thus giving it a positive spin. When it comes to marathon running, Greek bread and New York living, flat is good. Soda, tires and singing, not so much (the latter can get you a scathing rebuke from Simon at American Idol). When you think about it, the word flat is neutral, occasionally taking sides based on the context and speaker's intent.

Donuts, on the other hand are always good, especially on a Friday morning. This Friday morning, Kim Carroll treats us to an unimpeachable selection of Krispy Kreme donuts. So, don't get caught flat-footed; make that move to flatten the competition. The energy you need is waiting to be released, conveniently packaged in the form of a humble donut.
Happy Friday!

Sun, Fog or Snow, Donuts are a Go!

Dear Members and Constituents,
I've said it before and I'll probably say it again: what a difference a day makes.

Wednesday -Springtime. Driving with the ragtop down, enjoying the fresh and delicious air coming into my lounges. I close my eyes, the fresh breeze acts as a time machine taking me back to my childhood for a fraction of a second. Long enough to be perceived yet short enough to be just out of reach. Thursday -Scotland. The unusual onset of a ghastly blanket of fog creates a surreal rendition of the Highlands in Broomfield. What mysteries lie beyond the white shroud, just out of sight? The chill that hits the bones sets in by late afternoon. Friday -Siberia. Snow and sleet up to three feet with hints of the Goulash and thoughts exile up and down the street.
While the weather may be fickle, our will to provide you with donuts every Friday is strong! Tina Telson debuts as donut girl today with five "dozen" Winchell's donuts. If you were brave enough to make…

Billion American Dollars Seem Highly Insignificant Today -(coin your own acronym)

Dear Members and Constituents,
It's not clear whether Everett Dirksen (who served in the U.S. congress 1933 - 1969) ever uttered the infamous phrase "a billion here, a billion there and pretty soon you're talking real money". It is clear, however, several recent news stories seem to imply a billion dollars is not "real money".
The U.S. is contemplating $1.2 Billion in aid to Pakistan which, according to analysts, is unlikely to buy us much (if any) good will from their people The $7.2 Billion broadband stimulus package will not make a meaningful dent in the disparity that exists between urban and rural broadband availability. The Congressional Budget Office has estimated the administration's budget could bring about $9.3 Trillion (12 zeroes) in deficits. Heck, Bernie Madoff, a single individual, was able to defraud investors out of $65 Billion (what's a billion among friends?)It's intuitive to me that a Billion dollars (nine zeroes) buys elected o…

Some Serious Donuts have Arrived

Dear Members and Constituents,
There appear to be a lot of folks out there taking themselves a bit too seriously these days. The leaders at the G-20 summit in London. Serious. The protesters outside. Serious. The pundits reading between the lines. Serious. The satellite radio company. Sirius. Heck, even the NY Yankees are debuting a $1.5 Billion stadium this year, full of granite coverings and themselves. That's some serious spending on a pastime (even if it is the national pastime). Seriously, a lot of serial seriousness going on out there. Something needs to be done to counter-balance the somber mood, and I know just the thing. It's infantile, immature and unproductive. No, I'm not talking about about that co-worker who keeps sending you chain e-mails. I'm talking about yo' mama jokes. You know what I'm talkin' about. Picture in your mind's eye a ghetto scene with two kids going back and forth indulging in this offbeat, off color, offensive humor. Are …

Mystery Monday Donuts

Dear Members and Constituents,
On the 250th week of the Friday Donut Club, snow prevented us from sharing the sweet flavor of donuts. Today, a mystery benefactor has left three dozen donuts at my desk. Also, a mystery sign (presumably by the aforementioned benefactor) reads "Donuts??!! A little bit of snow & no donuts? WTF?". Speaking of mysteries, another mystery surrounding our break room supplies has started to unravel. I ran into a Eurest employee re-stocking our break-room this week and inquired about the conspicuous absence of plasticware inventory. Plasticware, you know, that utilitarian category of break-room supplies made-up of spoons, knives and forks. Apparently, Eurest has been asked to stop stocking plasticware in the break-rooms. No need to rub your eyes, you read correctly.

My first instinct was to assume this was a cost-cutting measure, so I took a stab at calculating the savings. Shall we?
A 10 second Google search revealed 1,000 forks cost $15.52 online. L…

Just Desserts

Dear Members and Constituents,
I have a confession to make. The past couple of weeks I've had a festering, morbid curiosity over the unfolding developments in the insider trading case against former Qwest CEO Joe Nacchio. It's like watching a bad reality TV show (and I'm using the term "bad" in the "looks as real as a pig wearing make-up" sense of the word). It's so bad, I can't help but follow it.
First there's the fact that it's still going on (how long has it been, five... six years?).Then, not only are his lawyers preparing to appeal his case to the Supreme Court, some pundits believe it's likely to get heard (you read right).There was the last-minute request to delay his long overdue date with our penal system (which was to be this coming Monday) to follow-up on some biopsy results for possible skin cancer. Seriously, they decide to check-up on a suspicious growth the week before he's due to go to prison? Now the judge agreed …

Donut Dilemma

Dear members and Constituents,
This week I was torn between two topics I wanted to write about. On one hand I read an astonishing statistic by Stephen Schwarzman, CEO of Blackstone Group, who says "between 40 and 45 percent of the world's wealth has been destroyed in little less than a year and a half". On the other, I read about Plup Lähdevesi, spring water being sold in Finland using donut-shaped bottles (and for every bottle sold, €0.10 goes towards cleaning the Baltic sea).


Alright, I admit it, "torn" may be a bit of an exaggeration. In-fact it was not even a close contest. Donut-shaped water bottles saving the environment is a stroke of genius! Kudos to Stephan Linfoss, the creator of this innovative product. Who'd of thought they could find another way to get us to pay for... water? Although, I'm not so sure about the name: "plup". It kind of sounds like a drip -I am reminded of a leaky sink in the middle of the night going plup... plup...…

Lose no Time, Donuts are Here

Dear Members and Constituents,
How do you feel about loosing an hour? I don't know about you, but personally I would say it depends on the context. If I had one day left to live and now instead of 24 hours I have 23, disappointed might be an understatement. If, on the other hand I were being held hostage and the loss meant I get released an hour sooner, I'd say bring it on! Granted, by springing forward this weekend, the hour is technically not lost (our lives are not made one hour shorter), however, there is the practical matter of having a shorter Sunday.

No matter how you feel, Melissa Nibbelink (donut girl) delivered the wholesome goodness of five dozen sweet donuts to my desk this morning. May I suggest you waste no time and come on down. Who knows what the selection will look like one hour from now.

Happy Friday,

Donut Pop Quiz

Dear Members and Constituents,
I have a multiple choice, fill-in the blank exercise for you this morning. I was considering an essay but, c'mon! who wants that on a Friday morning? Ready? Here it goes:

The world is ____________________________.
(a) Good to me
(b) A big lump of dispassionate rock, water and air
(c) Always on the brink of a catastrophe
(d) A stage (and we are the actors)
(e) Other _______________________

I think your answer to this simple rhetorical question would reveal whether you are cheerful, pragmatic, paranoid, narcissistic (perhaps a Shakespeare fan) or a trouble maker. Regardless of your answer (that is between you and yourself), today the world has conspired with Rich Law (donut boy) to bring the sweet aroma of donuts to my desk. So come on down and choose from one of the 60 donuts available for your consumption. I promise you, no trick question and there is no wrong answer.

Happy Friday!

Fun With Donuts

Dear Members and Constituents,
What makes something "fun"? Does freezing your buns off, bruising your body while defying death and pushing yourself to exhaustion constitute fun? When put that way, it does not sound like all that much fun, yet, I must admit I had fun skiing yesterday. Different people have different ideas of fun and the same person can have fun in ways that may appear to be polar opposites (e.g. I also enjoy being warm, uninjured, rested and nowhere near death -- say watching a movie). Princeton's Wordnet defines it as "activities that are enjoyable or amusing". This seems to miss the mark for me, because it begs the question, what is enjoyable and/or amusing? While subjective definitions abound, I'm not sure I've stumbled upon a universal blanket definition for fun that would describe it objectively. Is a smile involved? Is there a center of the brain that needs to be active? Does adrenaline play a role? Is there something that is fun fo…

I'm not Superstitious

Dear Members and Constituents,
Superstition is defined as an irrational belief arising from ignorance or fear. No one wants to be called irrational, ignorant or fearful... so why are people superstitious? How do superstitions get started? I suppose it goes something like this:
(1) Man walks under ladder.
(2) Paint bucket spills on his new suit.
(3) Man starts proclaiming to the world it is bad luck to walk under ladder.

Superstitions generally revolve around luck. Good luck (finding pennies, horseshoes, four leaf clovers, the number seven) and bad (stepping on cracks, black cats, breaking mirrors). There are old superstitions handed down from time immemorial and there are new ones sports fans and gamblers alike create anew every year. Somehow, Friday the 13th has gotten an especially bad rap in the world of superstition. I think it's time to change that. After all, Friday is a day when the weekend is calling at your door and donuts are waiting for you at my desk. And 13, well, that'…

No Waiting for Donuts

Dear Members and Constituents,
What makes a marketing campaign successful? I bet getting a huge response to your Super Bowl ad is on most people's short list (for those who have a short list anyway). As I drove my family home from Denny's early Tuesday morning, I could not help but wonder how the folks at corporate would gauge their success. Would they count the number of free grand slams served and compare them to the number of breakfasts served on a normal Tuesday? I'd wager they had a ten-fold increase. The line was, after all, out the door. By that criteria, however, my family and I would not be counted. You see, waiting an hour to be seated was too long, even for a free meal. How do you account for a four-year-old's disappointment? How do you model the effect of a six-year-old's groggy pout after having been dragged out of bed at 6:00 am with the promise of hot meal? I'll tell you this, while my family has great unaided recall of the Denny's brand name …

Historic Donut Week

Dear Members and Constituents,
Is it just me or is the media abusing the term "historic" these days? From the historic election of a blackberry-toting president to his historic inauguration ceremony to the issuing of a historic commemorative coin. You'd think they could share the wealth and find other suitable words to describe current events. Words like memorable, noteworthy, unique, unusual, innovative, once-in-a-lifetime, rare, newsworthy... spongeworthy! All presidential inaugurations are historic. And one might argue things can be historic for good or bad reasons. All I'm saying is they should ease off the term a bit. After all, historic is something that history will recall and, since history is a compilation of things that have happened in the past, that's not a very high threshold. I think Fezzik, the giant in Princess Bride said it best when he called Vizzini out on his over-use of the word inconceivable: "you keep using that word. I don't think …

Is it Tuesday? I think not - let's call it Friday

Dear Members and Constituents,
Yesterday in a casual hallway conversation someone mentioned to me it's beginning to look a lot like Christmas (to which my only response was "again"). It appears the Christmas weather has put an anonymous donut fan in the Christmas mood. As I arrived at my desk a couple of minutes ago, to my delight, there was a box with three dozen LaMar's donuts with a sticky note on it that read "Is it Tuesday? I think not - let's call it Friday", to which my only response is "amen". I invite the secret benefactor to let us know their identity. I also invite all of you to come on down and partake in an unexpected donut feast.

Happy Fri... Tue... let's just say happy donut day!

A Dessert World

Dear Members and Constituents,
Is it just me, or are we simply surrounded by some truly delectable scenery? There's the whipped cream clouds with a hint of orange glaze on the southeast as the sun rises beneath them, creating a patch of tangerine sorbet fog towards the northwest. The spilled bags of peeled sunflower seed fields with pretzel stick trees raising out of them. And, who could forget, the vanilla wafer cookie walls of the big box housing developments neatly stacked and arranged in orderly rows. Later in the day we have a 30% chance of coconut ice cream snow so we can take it all in a-la-mode. Alright, perhaps if I'd had a bigger dinner last night, my choice of analogies might be different as I describe these sights I enjoyed on my drive into work.

I don't know about you, but all this talk of food has suddenly made me hungry (and no, I'm not speaking metaphorically). Fortunately, Tucker Maroney (donut boy) has arrived with five dozen delicious donuts. So take a…

Sweet Memories

Dear Members and Constituents,
For some reason, this week brought with it a series of vivid childhood memories. Perhaps the trigger was the splendid bald eagle flying past the window in conference room 32C-705 (I was going to be a biologist when I grew up) or it may have been the longing for a warmer climate (my first real winter was experienced at age 19). Whatever the reason, looking back on my childhood, I was surprised by the unexpected flood of memories and emotions I had not been aware I still carried with me. Like files on a rarely accessed network drive, these apparently forgotten moments hid there waiting to be summoned. As my mind's eye wandered through places and events, seemingly random linkages triggered adjacent memories, creating a domino effect which etched a smile on my face. You see, while not perfect, on balance, my childhood was happy. Key components of these pleasant memories were the places where I played. A sunny hillside where I would spend hours collecting …

Gauisus Novus Annus

Dear Members and Constituents,
Happy New Year! A year filled to the brim with hope and optimism. Where everything is new again and nothing seems impossible. The unmarked pages on the calendar speak of unspoiled potential and unbridled possibilities. Opportunity knocks and we are rested and ready to answer the call. But, why do we start the new year on January 1st? That was the deceivingly simple question Verónica, my teenage daughter, asked during the holiday lull. Why indeed. The closest cosmic event is the winter solstice, nearly two weeks earlier, so I speculated the Julian calendar had slowly fallen out of synch with the solar cycle (which is, of course, why the Gregorian calendar was instituted). Not content with mere speculation, and figuring there had to be a perfectly good explanation, I set-out to find an answer. My speculation proved to be way off the mark. It turns-out January 1st was instituted in 153 BC as the day the new year begins because that was the day the government…