Monday, February 28, 2011

Rick's project

Rick told me that he was going to make me his project, that he was going to reconvert me. I'm inclined to let him because his intent is to reconvert me to mountain biking. I'm somewhat embarrassed to admit that the number of times I rode my mountain bike last year was probably about a dozen.

Not so long ago, I didn't even own a road bike. Until last year, I didn't own a cross bike. Last year I think I raced my cross bike as many times as I rode my mountain bike. Clearly the mountain bike needs more attention.

To remedy the situation, I have taken drastic measures: I have quit my job* so I can spend my days in Utah County where MTB lunch rides are a way of life.

*Unfortunately, I am not independently wealthy, so I had to get another one, it just happens to be in Utah County, not too far from the lunch ride epicenter.

Forecast for tomorrow is 46 and sunny. See you at noon?

Friday, February 25, 2011

Pioneer Yurt Teaser

I've been away most of this week. Here's a sneak peak at what I was up to, courtesy of Jon S.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Go ahead, make my day

Cyclists, like ballerinas, tend to have body image issues. It’s easy to forget when you’re stressing about being three kilos above race weight that you’re probably still pretty fit.

This morning while I was changing my clothes after skiing, a task I performed (as usual) in the parking lot at the mouth of Little Cottonwood Canyon, as soon as I peeled my shirt off, I heard a car honking behind me. I turned to look, and a man and a woman were seated in the car. The man opened the door and yelled at me “come over here.”

I was naked to the waist, so of course such a request seemed odd, but he repeated himself--speaking with a European-sounding accent--multiple times. As I walked towards them, now in plain view from the front, he said to me “Thank you—you just made her day,” referring to the woman in the driver’s seat. “She’ll be smiling all day long because of this.”

As they drove off, they honked, waved, smiled, and gave me the thumbs up. I was flattered. In the process of making her day, they made mine. At least, that is, until I realized that by walking towards them, I was merely no longer obstructing their view of the ground squirrel frolicking on the hillside behind me.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Out of sync

I was about four paragraphs into a really terrible blog post when I realized that not only was it not going to be worth reading, it wasn’t even worth finishing.

Instead, may I direct your attention to what Matt B. has to say. Whether you live in a state governed by a backward legislature or not, his insights into the immigration “problem” are spot on. For a government that seems unafraid to invoke morality or even divine authority as a justification for certain policies, how they interpret the second great commandment and treat their fellow man seems a bit, shall we say, out of sync.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011


Saturday I met Daren, Aaron, Tim, and Tanner with the objective of skiing the Coalpit Headwall. It’s a line clearly visible from the highway. It is much easier, however, to see it than to get to it. The difficulty in getting to it turned out to be the best thing about the tour, as what we saw in our 14 miles of touring was among the most spectacular scenery in the Wasatch. Hogum Fork in particular is, well, I’ll let the photos speak for themselves.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011


How awesome was Sunday’s game? I looked forward to the Super Bowl for the full two weeks after the conference championships, but I did not expect a great game. It usually isn’t. That it was was a bonus.

The greatness I did expect was from the advertisers. I worked for an ad agency when I was in college and thought about making a career out of it (but was dissuaded by the volatility and high burnout rate*), and I still enjoy effective, creative advertising. My pick for best ad of the game? Imported from Detroit by Chrysler.

*So I went to work in the tech industry instead. Go figure. I think about going back to advertising every time I watch an episode of Mad Men**. 

**Whether you’re a fan of Mad Men or not, you are probably a fan of sex. If you are, you should give this article from Mad Men star Christina Hendricks a read. In fact, if you are a man, commit her advice to memory.

Perhaps this is a sentimental decision since I spent two years of grad school living just outside of Detroit and the two preceding years living well within its rustbelt influence. While in grad school, I even did a consulting project for Chrysler*. 

*Where I was forced to park my Japanese-made car in a distant, “competitive cars” parking lot and came away wondering whether anything could save such a screwed up company. What I did know was that it was going to take way more than whatever little bit six MBA students could contribute.

Living in Michigan, I saw first hand just how bad things are in Detroit. Things were so bad, in fact, that at the time, people actually thought Kwame Kilpatrick could improve them. And it’s only got worse since then. This is a city that needs a break. It relies on an industry that needs a break. But the only way they’re going to get a break is if they earn it. Which is why I love this ad: it tells a great story, and the story is, they’re up to the task.

So are they up to it? Time will tell. But it was enough to make me think about buying a type of car I’ve never considered from a manufacturer I’d never have previously considered. I can’t help but think some consumers will be convinced enough to actually buy one. I hope for the sake of the city that they are enough.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Ski photo dump

I’ve got lots of ski photos from the last couple weeks that I haven’t had time to post for whatever reason. The outings were as follows:

  • An absolutely splendid family ski day at Park City Mountain Resort with the Rabid family. About as much fun as I’ve had on skis ever. Mostly because JunkieBoy was chasing the Rabid Yahoos down the mountain all day, and I think his skiing improved 100% in one day. I have never seen him ski like that, and it was great fun to watch. PCMR just vaulted to the top of my list for favorite places to ski with the family. Terrain is perfect for kids without being boring for adults spoiled by the backcountry.
  • An absolutely frigid day skiing Holy Toledo and Pole Line Pass with Dug, Alex, Steve W., Nate, and Mike L. In addition to Dug getting frostbite on his nose, the last push to the top of Pole Line was unskinnable, so we had to boot. Oh, and the snow was boilerplate intermittently punctuated by pools of graupel. Somehow it was still fun.
  • An absolutely amazing day this morning skiing Short Swing with Mike H., Daren, and Kendall. The forecast didn’t call for much snow, and the winds were howling all night, so my expectations were low. Turned out to be a bluebird day with boot top-deep cold smoke. Of course we went back for seconds.


Yahoo #1

Yahoo #2



Spouse of Rabid

Mike L. on Holy Toledo

Dug and Steve W.

Kendall prepares to drop into Short Swing.


Kendall took the camera while I kicked up some cold smoke.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Chinese New Year

We celebrated Chinese New Year the most obvious way possible: by going to a Chinese restaurant. It was awesome. This guy was right next to our table when I took this photo.

OK, just kidding. This photo was shamelessly ripped off from The Big Picture. And instead of having that guy performing right next to our table, we waited 45 minutes in a very crowded lobby for any table. And that was after we had called ahead to get our names on the list 15 minutes before we arrived. Really, if that’s the case, you’d think the restaurant would consider allowing reservations for parties smaller than eight.

Happy year of the rabbit and all that.