Sunday, August 30, 2009

Drive by Truckers

In case you were wondering just what it is about that band I like so much I present to you a video I shot last night of them playing Neil Young's Rockin' in the Free World.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

NFL to increase its regular season to 18 games?

If you lengthen the season you will have to expand the rosters and that will dilute the talent. Already you have the Panthers wondering where they will get a legitimate defensive tackle to replace our injured starter and you have the league considering lengthening the season? Don't make sense. Hopefully the NFL won't go the way of NASCAR and lengthen the season merely for revenue. What has this practice brought NASCAR? Lower ratings and what some have labeled a step back in competition.

16 games is already too many when a running back is considered old at 30. The abuse the bodies of these players absorb is already creating 40 year old invalids. Each time these athletes crash into each other it's like being in a car wreck. Expecting the players to take that pounding for another two regular season games is unrealistic.

Not only will you dilute the talent but you will risk losing some of the star power of some players. Football teams are already large. You have 22 starters and some teams, like the Panthers, that essentially have two feature running backs to go along with their kicker, punter, punt return specialist and kick off kickin' specialist. You expand the season and expand the rosters you are going to tax my already overwhelmed brain. How many player names am I going to have to memorize to follow the modern NFL game?

Friday, August 28, 2009

More Michigan Trip

After we left Green Bay we crossed the Wisconsin/Michigan border and followed Highway 2 along the northern coast of Lake Michigan. Our first touristy stop was the breakwater and lighthouse in the town of Manistique. You can see the breakwater below. The lighthouse is on the right arm.

View Larger Map

The breakwater has no guard rails and is sketchy in spots but people walk on it so the city provides the sign you see Melanie standing next to.

This is me out on the breakwater. I believe I am pointing at a UFO.

According to a sign on the beach this town was a big logging town like many towns in that part of country back in the early 1900s. When sawdust would accumulate it would be loaded onto barges and dumped into the lake. The sign informed us that sometimes you could see a soupy-like water and that it was caused by this sawdust rolling onto the shore. Sure enough, next to the breakwater I could see this dark soupy water and you could tell it was carrying sawdust. I guess there are tons and tons of sawdust laying offshore and it's going to be rolling in for a long time.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Mackinac Bridge Panorama

Mackinac Bridge Panorama
Originally uploaded by zzazazz

After we passed through Green Bay and drove along the northern coast of Lake Michigan we arrived at the Straits of Mackinac. Off of Highway 2 there is an overlook that gives you a nice view of the Mackinac Bridge. I stitched this together last night and I am happy with the result.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Monday, August 24, 2009

More Vacation

After we left out from the campground in Two Rivers, WI we drove northwest to Green Bay. Since we were denied our visit to Wrigley Field due to a flat tire we were determined to see Lambeau Field. Green Bay is not a very big city and Lambeau is much easier to get to than Wrigley. Parking is readily available in the stadium parking lot and a gift shop is open. You can even pay around ten bucks for a tour of the stadium. Since we needed to be at the Straits of Mackinac that afternoon we just walked around the outside of the stadium, went inside the gift and the atrium. Lambeau if a beautiful structure and the gift shop is huge. You can get just about anything with the famous Green Bay "G" on it there. I now wish I had bought a hat. They had a great selection of headgear there.

This is a view of the atrium. This glassed in area is attached to the stadium. To the left is the gift shop and you can see two statues in front of the atrium. The statue on the left is Vince Lombardi and the one on the right is of Curly Lambeau. I believe he is the same Lambeau for whom the field is named.

Curly Lambeau wearing the first bronzed sweatshirt I have ever seen.

The statue of Vince Lombardi. You can see a tour group in the background. There is a tour scheduled about every half hour and they were doing a brisk business selling tickets for the tour.

The famous Lambeau facade. What we liked about this place is that the stadium was still called Lambeau and the franchise had sold naming rights to the gates. We saw three gates and each one was sponsored by a corporation.

Inside that atrium there were these nice banners honoring former Packer greats.

This narrow shot of the bleachers and an entrance is as close as I got to seeing the playing field. You had to pay for the tour to see the field and we didn't have enough time to take the tour. I asked at the customer service desk if it was possible to just duck inside and see the field and I was told that that would be unpossible. I doesn't hurt to ask, I guess. Too bad. A quick glimpse and a few quick pops with the camera would have made a great time even better.

After leaving Lambeau and Green Bay we heading north east to the Wisonson/Michigan border and a beautiful drive along the northern coast of Lake Michigan.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Hi There

Melanie and I got back safely from vacation yesterday. We spent the previous night in a cozy Best Western in Caldwell, OH. I randomly surfed the internet and stitched together some panoramas I took in Michigan and Melanie indulged herself with some channel surfing. It was a sweet little vacation from vacationing.

The first time I broke out the camera during vacation was during a short stop in a beautiful burg called Manitowoc, WI. It's on the western coast of Lake Michigan and when we passed through town Lake Michigan appeared and we stopped to see the view. There was a fog rolling in.

We camped a few miles up the coast at Point Beach Forest State Park. We got set up pretty quick.

We walked down the beach around sunset and we were blown away again by the beauty of Lake Michigan. The picture below is the view looking north. We took off our shoes and waded in the ice cold lake and washed away all the stress of that flat tire incident in Chicago.

Stretching across the horizon was the front wall of the fog that had eventually moved offshore. As the sun set the wall of mist turned pink. A miles long pink wall shone for a few minutes in the last light. I should have run to get my tripod so I could really capture it but I was afraid to leave and miss it.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Trip to Michigan

So, Melanie and are in Michigan. I don't really have time to do a long post but I can post a link to some pictures I have taken.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

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Sunday, August 09, 2009

No beer?

By the way, you can't buy cold beer anyway near the Motel 6 in Lafayette, IN. First we went to a Meijer store and they sold liquor and unrefrigerated beer. We decided to go to the convenience store across the way. I walked into the convenience store and it had no beer cooler. I asked the girl behind the desk where we could buy cold beer and she looked at me like I was a space alien and said, " a liqour store." What kind of a state doesn't allow beer sales in convenience stores?

Friday, August 07, 2009

I crack myself up

We have a teen writers group that meets here once a month and one of the exercises we enjoy is passing a paper around and each person adds a sentence to whatever weirdness is already on there. What is produced is always strange and funny. I used one of them below to create this stoopid movie.

We reap what we sow, pal

Found this video via Tom Tomorrow. Glenn Back vomits all this scary sludge day after day and then has to go on television and caution the mob he's helped stir up to not be violent. I know I've said it before but how do people like Limbaugh, Beck, Hannity and Drudge even look at themselves in the mirror? How do you make millions of dollars by pandering to the basest instincts of the ignorant and not crawl into the bathtub one night with a plugged in toaster?
John Hughes as Penpal

I was sad to see that John Hughes died. The scene where John Candy is driving the wrong way on the interstate is still one of biggest laughs I've ever had while watching a movie for the first time. I came across a sweet blog entry today. It's the story of a teenager who had John Hughes as her penpal for a couple of years. It's very touching and you can read it here.

Thursday, August 06, 2009

New Technology for Baseball

Check out this article from the New York Times. I think this will produce data that will be fascinating to examine. Be sure to watch the video. I love the animation of the throw from the outfielder to the shortstop which the shortstop the relays to the catcher. Notice also in the video how every defensive player on the field shifts in the direction of the ball after it is hit. Fascinating.

Monday, August 03, 2009

Some Photos

Here are a few photographs that I have taken.

The other night there was a beautiful yellow sunset. I had Chris run out with me to the street to try and capture the color.

Melanie's battery died Thursday and Wendell was nice enough to pick her up at work.

We have a couple of teen summer volunteers and a project they are working on is painting our chess pieces. The previous colors of the pieces were brown and light brown and they could be hard to tell apart. No more!

I'm happy with how this picture of South Blvd turned out.

I dig the symmetry in this picture I took during a ride on the light rail.

Saturday, August 01, 2009