Friday, March 31, 2006
Enjoy the pics...I will get more - it's raining right now so I can't go jump. Plus John and Beth are here and we are starting to eat... ;)
Thursday, March 30, 2006
2nd - I'm so freakin excited about #1. I'm not so much excited about the house as I am about the dirt that is being dug up and placed strategically in the yard. YES! I will get pics if they're not up at the updated site. I am going to have a little MX track in the yard. So freakin cool. Jumps and all. I don't even think I'm going to relandscape the yard when it's finished either. ;)
Tuesday, March 28, 2006
2. One must also accept that one has 'uncreative' moments. The more honestly one can accept that, the quicker these moments will pass. -Etty Hillesum
As for that quote, I do not have a story finished yet that I said I would have done. So, there - I haven't thought of anything funny or creative. Now, I've said it, I'm cool with it...so let the creative times now roll...hahahaha.
Sunday, March 26, 2006
First off, I am sick - bad sinus infection. Why go to the race?, you wonder? Didn't it snow there yesterday? Isn't it really cold outside there? The simple answer to your questions is yes. However, since a Nextel Cup race at Bristol is the hardest sporting event to get tickets to and it is the largest sporting arena in the country, how can one say no? Especially when the ticket is free and it is a free suite ticket at that. Yes, suite. Free food, free drinks, free scanners, heat, comfy rocker chairs, glass all around to see the track, private restrooms, etc. You get the picture. Oh yeah, plus I got a track pass and met Robby Gordon. Good times. And if you're wondering (as I was), it usually costs people around $500 a race to be in a suite. Granted you really can't buy a suite ticket - most of them are owned by companies, but one is available for people who want a suite package for $1900 a ticket (but that allows you to get into a suite for all 4 races in a year).
Anyway, When we got there we parked right in front of the track (very nice, not the usual walking 2 miles...) went straight in (no line) and got our 1st of 2 wrist bands. Then we took the elevator up to our suite and recieved the 2nd of 2 wrist bands.
After hanging out up there for a bit and eating a snack or two, Robby Gordon (#7) came by the suite and said hey, signed some things, took some pics and chatted for a bit. Then we were off to the track before the race started. We got down there a little late, but seeing as I have my law enforcement connections, they all knew me and let us on in. Great guys. As we made our way around the pits, I got some pics of the cars, Kenny Wallace doing his thing for the Speed network (speedvision/speedtv) and watched them measure out some cars to make sure the vehicles passed muster. This one happened to be Robby Gordon's. Who, btw, happens to be one of the greatest racers of all time. He is one of the very few who has raced Nascar, open-wheel, Baja, etc..you name it. Very talented. - I think he's even done the Dakar...I'll find out.
After going around the pits, we made our way back up to the suite. Food and drink were aplenty and waiting. So I divulged. I watched the opening ceremonies and an old nascar drive around the track and then it was onto the race. Diamond Rio sang, F18's flew overhead, the guys started their engines...and they were off.
Well, in the first few laps, tires were blown, people had to pit. There were quite a few yellows and even one red flag. One thing I have learned - this is an awesome sport. What cinches it for me is when you can watch the race and listen to the drivers and spotters and crew, and even the officials, on the scanners. Man, it brings a whole other dimension to this sport. There is a lot that goes on that I didn't even realize. And some of those people really have some mouths on them...hahaha. And, some of those people really don't like some of those other people. Hahahaha. I listened to Kasey Mears, Ryan Newman, Carl Edwards, Martin Truex Jr., Jeff Gordon, the Busch's, Kevein Harvick, Dale Jr., Matt Kenseth - yep, those are who I listened to for most of the race. I wish I had it recorded! This makes the race 20x more fun. Especially when you see someone like Jeff Gordon spin out someone like Martin Truex Jr., and listen to ol' #1 talk and know he's mad and to watch him get back out on the track and know what he's about to do (or attempt to in this case - until Tony Stewart comes in and screws everything up) and anticipate it. Of course in the end #24 got what was coming to him all day long, by none other than #17 Kenseth. And watching Gordon go after him after the race was fun too.
Bristol...wow. Even if you don't like Nascar, this one is a MUST SEE.
After the race, we watched the top few drivers interviewed and then went down to the vehicles and sat in them a while until we could leave. That was the only downside I could find...we were so close to the entrance, that it took a while for the traffic to clear out. Oh well, it was worth it! You really need to do this sometime.
Here are some more pics you may enjoy. :)
Wednesday, March 22, 2006
I am accepting one-liners or short statements, that you would like to see a story about. Give your inputs and I will pick one, or two - heck, I may even combine them all and write a story to be published on the blog (probably on next Tuesday or Weds.).
Sunday, March 19, 2006
There are 3 commercials (so far) - look for them coming soon to a TV near you. Or you can watch them all now, click the link.
Thursday, March 16, 2006
1 – I am sure you are all familiar with GoogleEarth. This is one of the coolest programs ever and a lot of fun to play with. If you’re not familiar with GoogleEarth, which has been out a long time, then you must be from the moon or Mars. In either case, there is also now GoogleMoon and GoogleMars. You can do the same thing with them as with GoogleEarth, only right now they are web versions. My favorite is GoogleMoon – if you zoom in close enough, you see the actual texture of the moon. People have been right about it for centuries.
2 – I couldn’t blog Tuesday because I was at Microsoft HQ in Redmond. This was the first time I had ever been to the campus headquarters and I can’t even describe how big it is except to say that in Redmond, there are 30,000 workers on over 8 Million square feet - and this link shows only part of it. I know some of you reading this are familiar with Eastman Chemical’s HQ, or Boeing’s HQ or other large companies similar. Well, to me Microsoft was vastly different. First it is not separated out from the city like most other large HQ’s. It is the city, intermingled with other businesses (like Intel and Nintendo) and shops and shopping malls, restaurants, etc. When we got off the interstate we turned right and pulled into the first Microsoft complex which had buildings 1-4 I think it was. Well, our meeting was in building 121. Yes, and these are not small buildings. It took us all of 30 minutes just to find our building. We drove all over Redmond trying to find it – and thank goodness we did. We wound up being 5 minutes early. Close. Oh yeah, MSN has it's own buildings and so does XBOX. Everyone was driving around in these white Toyota Prius Hybrid cars...something is in the works for that...I just know it... ;)
3 – I know I’ve said it before, but I love Switchfoot. A long plane ride means listening to a lot of stuff or reading a lot (which I’m finishing a biography on George Washington that is pretty good, too.). Well, for whatever reason, I had my nano on shuffle play and since I have all of their albums on there, they come up a lot. Finally I just started listening to them exclusively. If you haven’t heard their new album, it’s really good. Their lyrics are very insightful. I’m going to think about it a little more today, but I am strongly considering starting the process to bring them here in concert. I think people would come. Although, San Diego is a long way away. Hah.
No pics, nothing funny – just the facts. ;)
Monday, March 13, 2006
First, i got upgraded for my car. I had reserved the Pontiac Vibe (one of the cheapest, yet functional vehicles) but to my great delight I was upgraded to THE Buick LeSabre (one of my favorite cars) with XM Radio, etc. Loaded. Yes, many people refer to this as an old people car...I don't care, I love Buicks! Kinda takes me back to some of my Law Enforcement days.
I check into the room...and wow - what a view...Seattle is the place to be!
So i get up this morning and Piers' plane gets in at 10:30a PST - so I have tons of time on my hands. I decide to drive up to the university of Washington to get some souveniers at the bookstore (fyi, i collect college and MLB stuff [hats mostly] when I actually go to the campuses and/or games - already have a Seattle Mariners hat from when a friend of mine played for them). Well, to my surprise, they were having a huge book sale. 90% off. Yes I bought some books - yes I love to read. Shocker, I know.
On my way back down to Seattle, Piers called and said he was here (oops) and ready to be picked up whenever I felt the urge to come get him. I told him I'd be there in an hour os so and that he should grab a coffee or something. HAHAHAHA - no really it only took a sec to get him. We came back to the hotel, dropped off his stuff and went to eat at Anthony's at the harbor. Great oysters and Salmon! wow - that's all I got to say about that.
We decided to go to the space needle, paid our $14 (kim, do i get reimbursed on that?) and went to the top. Yes I have pictures. Actually, I'm sure i won't get reimbursed so I filmed the whole walk around of Seattle from the needle. If you would like to donate to the fund to get my $14 back, I will let you see the videos. ;)
I even caught Piers in a rare moment going down a handrail - yes i have video of that too. One thing I don't have video of was when we were in downtown, we were beiside a car at the redlight who had his music thumping (DMX or something similar). I asked Piers if he was feeling pretty good, kinda strong in this awesome weather, to which he replied, "yeah, it's great...". He had no idea what was in store for him. I rolled down the windows, cranked up the XM radio pretty loud and started getting everyone's atention. Even the guy beside us gave a nod. Oh but the caveat is that I had Opera music blasting. Piers was laughing, I had the straight gangsta face. What was anyone going to do? We were in a Buick! Ahhhh yeah....
We decided to drive around town (downtown) and see the city - and yes I got some pictures.
After a bit we stopped for a piece of pi. we were hungry.
Then we started heading back down to SeaTac where we're staying and Mt. Rainier looked so cool from the road, I told Piers we were going there (he had no choice since I was driving).
Well, on our way there i started noticing the oddest signage. Fines were all $101, not $100, but $101 and there were volcano evacuation route signs. See the pics.
The buick handled superbly all the way through the park - potholes and all (also avioding a large bobcat the size of my black lab...windows were quickly but quietly rolled up). Even Piers commented on how smooth the car handled. i had to fill him in on the fact that it was my expert driving (all the experience I've had off-roading) and not the car. To which he replied, oh ok..that makes sense, you do have a jeep. To which, I replied...hahaha what am I thinking? It is the Buick!
Now it's 6ish and we're debating on where to go to eat. Hmmmmm....priorities...guess I have to get off here now. Until Tomorrow.
Friday, March 10, 2006
Being in Nashville, my sole purpose of the trip was to learn more about how the state of TN’s legislature runs, meet and greet, and attempt to be comedic relief to otherwise dull moments. I had brief encounters of all 3 kinds. Enjoy.
1- How the State Legislature runs. This was the most basic/boring part. 99 members of the House, 33 of the Senate, 33 districts (aha), something about bills and laws, elected by the people and 5 golden rings, elections every 4 years, 3 different branches, 2 (or more) crooks (West TN of course) and Governor in the nicest office in the building, which happens to be one of the rooms without human remains.
2 – Meet and Greet. Head of the TN Lottery, House Speaker, Senate Speaker, various reps, Education, Finance & tourism heads and a lobbyist. Here are some of the most interesting facts I heard. A Black Democrat from a 98% white, 65% Republican district, was voted into office because Tennesseans are so loving and open-minded. The guy from the Dept of Education couldn’t do math. No wonder really, when you look at the budget and TN has a $26B or so budget but only $12B or so are real dollars. Yes it was interesting to hear that one explained. The speaker of the house didn’t realize there were grocery stores in East Tennessee – no he was not kidding. Didn’t seem to be the brightest bulb in the box. The Lottery expert had no idea how the lottery money was funneled into a scholarship fund for kids to go to college. “Pomp & Circumstance” was a phrase that repeatedly came to mind… There are no term limits (although there probably should be). Anyone can run for office – This gives me hope...hahahah. I could type more, but I really don’t want to bloviate, because there was enough of that Weds & Thurs. Plus I don’t want to starting opining here, even though I did just a wee bit.
3 – Comedic relief. For those of you who skipped straight to #3 without reading #1 or #2, I commend you. You didn’t miss anything. Nor did you forget my shout out to my “nicca’s” as the ones who read #1 and #2 (or fell asleep reading #1 or #2) did. If you read from the beginning and are still with me – wow! Unprecedented stamina! Well, except for me, I guess, since I’m typing. Anyway…on to the funny/ironic stuff (not necessarily in that order).
There is a large bust of Nathan Bedford Forrest in the Capital building. He was a millionaire, started as a private, bought his own horses, etc and was promoted to colonel (I think it was), was a supposed brilliant military strategist, etc. Oh yeah, he founded the KKK too. I wouldn't have thought he'd have been honored in the state capital. Maybe I'm missing something...
The architect of the building requested to be entombed in the capital and was so obliged. I found this funny but really lost it when they said that he wasn’t the only one entombed there. Here are pics of 2 of the people buried in the walls.
At last, now to some funnier stuff. I went out with some of the people in our group that night (mostly because they are all pretty fun, but really because that’s when the funny memorable stuff happens). We went to a little place called tootsie’s. A small, downtown bar, standing room only, a suck band (still not sure why they let that guy sing), smoky, etc. Now, to completely understand this story, I must give additional info here for a moment. There are roughly 30 of my peers with me on this trip (around the same age, etc) and a group of 4 people who came with us as an “experiment” who were senior citizens. Retired corporate folk. Well, these 4 missed the bus after dinner back to the hotel and went walking with us, to the bar. Well, my nicca’s and I were in the bar and talking, laughing, etc when Nicole looked around and notice all the old people bent over in the floor, scouring for their lost gold. She asked me, “Wonder what they are looking for?” I, in my infinite wisdom, replied, “They probably lost their dentures.” This brought out a chuckle to everyone around and then the lady senior citizen (the other three were males) came over to us looking on the floor. Nicole asked her what she was looking for. “My tooth, I lost my tooth.” Yes, I laughed hard. Yes, out loud. We all started laughing heartily. I had been correct in my assumption – I was even surprised. After a little bit of laughing we let the older lady in on what was so funny and she thought it was hilarious. About 5 minutes later, she came up to me and stated she had found it, and smiled really big (her front tooth was what fell out). I, in my unabashed curiosity, probed “You actually put that back in your mouth?” To which she replied “I rinsed it off.” At this point I could not stop laughing. What’s funnier is that the tooth fell out again and she put it in a second time without washing it off. Then she decided to see if anyone working there had any glue. Yes, she decided to glue the tooth in her mouth.
All that was available was nail glue. Myself and Michael (one of my peers) advised against it (A – we still had very clear thoughts; B- There was a big “X” on it stating it was permanent; C – the glue was for nails, not teeth). Luckily she listened, but occasionally I spied her talking with her thumb in her mouth holding her tooth in place.
As if that wasn’t enough, one of the women in our group (I’ll call “D”) was talking with a Scotsman who happened to be visiting our lovely country. For some reason, Nicole had brought to mine and Nick’s attention that the guy had XYZ problems. Yes, the zipper was down, repeat, the zipper was down. While we were standing at a distance watching the conversation, we started laughing. Well, those around us wondered what we were laughing at, so we told them. Finally, Nicole whispered to “D” about the XYZ, and stepped back. Yes. “D” did the look down, blush/laugh, and told the guy, who then smiled and proceeded to fix his zipper. The conversation between them didn’t last too long after that. Of course I chimed in with the whole “Their not used to wearing pants over there, remember…they wear skirts” thing.
Then we went to a karaoke bar, where our group really…I’ll stop there – WE WERE IN NASHVILLE for crying out loud. We forgot about the part where people who live there can really sing!
Then I went to bed. Anti-climatic. I know.
"Word to your mother, paragraph to the fam."
Tuesday, March 07, 2006
1 - What is it that appears four times in every week, twice every month, and only once in a year?
2 - Some intersting Facts...IAM OYUQ-ITYSMH SMJZO YB IAM GUSV EOYJTIM GN YIB UTIYKM JTHTQTBRTO IG SYKM STOQMSV GU IAM QOGZUH. SYKYUQ YU QOGZEB, IAMBM, SMJZOB TOM TRIYKM HZOYUQ IAM HTV TB IAMV LOGFBM NGO IAMYO NGGHB GN NOZYI, SMTKMB, LYOHB, TUH MQQB. IAM HYBIYURIYKM LSTRX-TUH-FAYIM ITYS YB FTKMH JMUTRYUQSV TB T FTOUYUQ HZOYUQ RGUNSYRIB. TSIAGZQA IAMV ATKM NMF UTIZOTS EOMHTIGOB, OYUQ-ITYSMH SMJZOB TOM BIYSS IAOMTIMUMH LV HMBIOZRIYGU GN IAMYO ATLYITI.
Yes, #1 should be very easy for you - #2 may be harder so I'll help you out. I=T and it's about an animal.
Monday, March 06, 2006
Wednesday, March 01, 2006
OK - i was treated to a grand ol' time last night at the GA Aquarium. we were the first group to use it for something. Anyway, I happened to slip in (incognito) to the closed aquarium and had the whole place to myself. So what did I do? you guessed it. i got naked and jumped in with the otters and swam around for a while. No... but, really...i did go around, though and took a bunch of pics and video. I'm putting the pics on here and can put links to the videos on here for you if y'all are interested.
There's a Whale Shark, baluga (sp?) whales, otters, sea lions, penguins, etc. Enjoy.