Friday, January 30, 2009

Caption Contest

Benign as it may look, the results captured in this picture was a big deal yesterday in the lives of hundreds of employees at my company and thousands of air travelers on the (Major) airline for which I work. I'll set the stage and let you'all come to the conclusion (which I really don't know the full out come yet).
Somewhere in Arizona, some one gets back from lunch, climbs into his small excavator and resumes digging in front of a non-descript building on the out skirts of Phoenix. He's contracted to drill post-holes to provide shade for the desert dwelling people living and using the parking lot. When he unearths a long pink snake, and it aint organic. It's the worst case scenario for communications between EVERY system we have.
Re-routs were orchestrated, a sys priority plan scrambled, fines averted, and a guy in a hole in the desert till late last night with a flashlight clenched in his teeth and the mother of all fibre splices in his two hands. Who thinks that strand will every work correctly again?

Saturday, January 24, 2009

the past couple few

It's been a good beginning to a new year. A little busier than I'd like with work but better than the alternative. On the horizon looms a road race somewhere in upstate NY, and is the catalyst for getting my ass in gear. Averaging just a ride a week presently has me concerned that I will be in for a long day come April 18th or 20th. I don't even know when that Battenkill race is. Note to self - step it up!
Skipolini and I had a good ride today. A couple hours on the road. Talking, panting, sweating below three plus layers of wool. It was the longest ride of the year for me. The weather has not cooperated for this weekend warrior. Boston has already received it's annual snowfall plus 3 inches. I've made plans with Thom P no less than three times now for a road fixie ride, and every time it's snowed. Tomorrow temps fore casted for 12 degrees Fahrenheit, no snow, I'll be there in seven layers and a face mask Thom P. Just wait every now and then, or draw arrows in the snow at intersections for us slow guys ;-0
So I've decided to buy a new road bike this year. I'm a little hesitant to jump on the carbon bandwagon but from looking around carbon fibre is about the only thing road bikes are made of now a days. Trek, Cannondale, Specialized, Seven? I'm going to NAHBS next month. Maybe I'll be coming home from Indy with a new toy from Calfee, Bilenky or Parlee.
Last weekend Big Pete (dad) and I went to DC for a pre-inauguration visit. The both of us have never been to our nation's capitol, and what better time to visit with two million people to trip over. We got familiar with D.C.'s public transportation system, visited five or six Smithsonian museums (rocked!) and froze our asses off walking around each night with temps near zero.
So, it was Saturday. Cold and windy. We decided to walk the national mall from the Capitol Building earlier in the day after hitting up the Native American Museum, Air and Space Museum and the American History Museum. We were beat, thinking of food, beer, warmth. Passing the Washington Monument and slowly progressing to the Lincoln Memorial...and with the inauguration planned for Tuesday the national Mall was set up for two million spectators, meaning one million pot-o-johns lining the 1.8 mile long grassy field from the Capitol Bldg to the Lincoln Memorial. Strolling Within the WWII memorial and looking at the glowing spire of the Washington Memorial, listening to James Taylor via tall loud speakers that were setup every one hundred yards. The acoustics were amazing. I estimate no less than fifty individual twenty-five foot tower of speakers with their own individual diesel generator every one hundred yards, on both sides of the national mall. The music bouncing off tall marble walls of the many adjacent government buildings. The Lyrics as clear and crisp as your living room. The traffic noise from Constitution Ave was no match for this pre-inauguration soiree'. Every now and then, just for good measure, a tractor trailer truck set-up with a jumbo-tron brightly-lit that would soon show the image of our forty-fourth president with a single hand on Abraham Lincoln's Bible.
Being there was special. Being there BEFORE the crowds more special. But the cold temps keeping people away that night.
Now nearing the tall white columns of the Lincoln Memorial. We could see in the distance that a stage was set in front of the giant statesman for which the memorial stands. The James Taylor song "Carolina in my mind" fades out. A guitar slowly tuning up, and I think, hey that sounds like U2. We look to the stage. 50 or 60 spectators gather as close as we could get to the Lincoln Memorial. Puzzled looks on our faces. Is that Bono? Springsteen and Stevie Wonder on stage talking to each other?
Then confirmation via the Jumbo-Tron. Up came the volume and a small number of us were witness to a private three song concert. Bono is a tough guy wearing no stocking hat despite the frigid temperatures. One thousand seats set up in front of the stage stood empty and were patrolled by security. Our small group grew to about one hundred and ten.
I held the camera on record, out stretched over my head for as long as my freezing hand could stand. I only made half of the song.

video

Monday, January 05, 2009

early ride '09

base

1 [beys] Show IPA Pronunciation
noun, adjective, verb, based, bas⋅ing. –noun
1. the bottom support of anything; that on which a thing stands or rests: a metal base for the table.
2. that from which a commencement, as of action or reckoning, is made; a starting point or point of departure.
3. a fun ride in early season with friend(s) while making motorcycle noises, skidding around snowy corners, enjoying the moment, and building some lungs back for a new season.


video

Sunday, January 04, 2009

Step into my time machine


But, some things have not, and will never change.
Although, I don't plan on racing again in a Cotton T-shirt.
Thanks for the article Mom.