Monthly Archives: December 2006

Thu 21 Dec 06

This domain expires in ten days.

It’s been a fun two-year run. A good aesthetic outlet. I was thinking about letting this site slip away into anonymity, but then realized that for $1.50 a month I probably can’t do much better for cheap entertainment. And I do like it. It’s a good little project. So, will live on and I will continue to whittle away at the visual fluff until I feel that simplicity reigns as it should (including stripping down that pesky code that I’m finally getting a handle on). So, yeah, that means you slightly clunky looking boxy links above, look out! More to come in ’07.

I will likely be transferring hosting services to the aforementioned host that was referenced in the link above in the coming weeks, so don’t be surprised to see a few days of error messages coming your way soon during the down time.

“Perfection, then, is finally achieved, not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.” -Antoine de St. Exupery.

Tue 12 Dec 06

I had an interview scheduled this afternoon with the University of California at Davis for this job (click link), but they just emailed me yesterday saying that they were “reevaluating the position due to funding limitations” and needed to postpone the interview. In my experience any combination of those words is usually a death knell. So, I’ll wait to hear back from them next week, but I’m bummed.

Really, really, bummed.

I’m actually writing this from my work office write now (went in to work early to get on the Internet and prep a little for the interview I was expecting). I can hear kids outside of my door talking and yelling in their school classroom and it just makes me tired. They aren’t even acting up yet, but it reminds me of the constant interaction I’m going to have to have with them for eight hours tonight and tomorrow and so on.

It’s just really exhausting to spend a good chunk of your week, every week, working with kids with emotional and behavioral issues. And the thing of it is that I know I’m good at my job. Though maybe that makes it worse. I go in every day with a positive outlook, am patient with the kids, don’t react negatively when I’m hit with a stream of profanity or spit at, hold kids accountable for their actions, am super active, and take care of all my responsibilities. It’s just really tough working in a setting and with kids where you don’t get many of those tangible rewards/achievements. Where a good day might be a day where a kid only flips out twice and didn’t throw a chair. I miss working with kids (coaching wrestling) with normal coping skills who are capable of feeling appreciative and empathetic.

I’ve been doing this for four years and it’s time for a change. That’s what Oregon was supposed to be for, but, man, Davis/Sacramento would be awfully sweet too if we could make it work financially. Mediterranean climate, two hours to the Pacific, two hours to mountains, close to major National Parks (such as Yosemite).

*drifts off to daydream again…*

Mon 11 Dec 06

Coming home from work tonight I stopped at one of the newer Meijer stores (Kzoo and 60th) and was reminded of how much I like having Meijer around. Other than that crazy aberration on 28th and Kalamazoo, these stores are just about the nicest grocery stores I’ve ever been in (Whole Foods in Denver is the only one I can think of that might top it). I like the way the stores are laid out. I like the different mingling food smells. I like the lighting and temperature. I really like that they have started catering more to organic/natural food eaters.

Anyway, really I’m writing all this just to have an excuse to write about the TVs in the checkout aisles at this particular store. They now have little TVs mounted above the conveyor belt to keep you occupied while you wait! Hurray America! Tonight’s feature seemed to be some sort of documentary about one of the actors on Grey’s Anatomy. I don’t know how I feel about this new development yet. I guess it at least shows that Meijer is still putting forth some effort to keep its customers happy.

I won’t be satisfied until they have moving sidewalks on every aisle though. I didn’t drive all the way to the store just to have to walk around with my legs.

Sun 10 Dec 06

Surf Report # 27

Location: Grand Haven, MI – South Pier
Time: 3:00 pm- 4:00 pm
Air Temp: 42° F
Water Temp: 40° F
Wind: From SSW 17 mph
Waves: 4-7 ft
Gear: 5/3 wetsuit, 5 mm boots, 3 mm gloves, .5 mm hood

Checked out Ferrysburg and the north pier first. Waves were breaking, but nothing too big. Looked quite a bit bigger across the channel by the south pier (which if I had thought ahead would of course make sense with wind out of the south), so I changed into my wetsuit and drove back into Grand Haven. Also, this avoided the kiteboarders who gearing up to swoop around the north pier as I first pulled into the lot.

Well the south side was a complete mess, but definitely way bigger. Lots of peaks and bowls. Super amusing when a couple of waves peaked right where I happened to be floating. I kept imagining that this is what it must feel like to be caught out on some open arctic sea. No really long rides, but occassionally I could string together two different waves colliding and heading in opposite directions. Pretty fun making a dramatic directional shift mid ride.

Only stayed out about an hour though as the choppy waves really did a solid job of repeatedly flushing icy water down my back.

Sat 2 Dec 06

Surf Report # 26

Location: Grand Haven, MI – North Pier
Time: 4:00 pm- 5:15 pm
Air Temp: 36° F
Water Temp: 44° F
Wind: From WSW 19 mph
Waves: 5-8 ft
Gear: 5/3 wetsuit, 5 mm boots, 3 mm gloves, .5 mm hood

Snuck out of work early to sneak this session in. So good. First true cold weather surf day of the year for me. I forgot how strange it feels to go marching through snow drifts, surfboard under arm, protected only be neoprene. Waves were way bigger than I thought they were going to be and I had them to myself as a couple of fishermen took off just as I pulled up.

About half an hour in I found a fairly big channel sucking water away from the beach and was able to paddle out quite a ways further than I usually do. I then paddled North away from the channel and bobbed up and down in the biggest breakers I personally have ever sat on in Lake Michigan. Kind of a mesmerizing moment. Watching the sun set red over the Grand Haven lighthouse and reflected through whitewater spray. Felt like the waves and the birds and the wind were there just for me.

I was caught off guard by the size and smoothness of the wave that rolled through while I was enjoying the scenery. But I paddled and caught the lip without really thinking. Perched for a split second on the crest and thought about how this was easily the tallest wave I’ve ever been on then shifted my weight and slipped down the face, knowing the whole way down that I was riding one of those special waves. So fast! Not the ocean wave power behind it, just the rush of gravity. Did a bottom turn left, then a little jig back to the right and was surprised when I looked up by how much lateral distance I had covered in what felt like a couple of seconds.

I got chills when I plopped off of my board and let out a series of whoops and laughs. I then spent the next fifteen or twenty mintues trying to get back outside to have another go, but the longshore current kept yanking me around. In the end I just played in the smaller surf until my hands were too numb to go on (dogs bit a hole in one of my gloves). Shivered my way through the usual outhouse changing session and took off for home in the twilight.

Might be it for the year as far as winter surf goes though. Certainly not the safest time to go out by yourself.