Thursday, September 18, 2008


photo by jan

Not much more to say on this topic... thanks to all who were there and to those who weren't. It was the best day of my life so far and the best week. So great to hang with friends from the past -- as well as so many new friends. Having both of our families there was fabulous...

... and I can't wait to spend the rest of my life with Ali.

See you all next post!

Monday, September 8, 2008

Peaks and Valleys

Obviously, it was a roller coaster of a weekend.

Tom Brady, quarterback of the New England Patriots, took a hit below the knee on Sunday ending his season. Man, Tom's last two games have been a bummer. They do not, however, take anything away from his amazing accomplishments.

The team released the following statement regarding Brady:

"After extensive tests this morning, it was revealed that New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady's left knee, which was injured in the first quarter of yesterday's game, will require surgery. He will be placed on injured reserve and will miss the remainder of the 2008 season."

Best wishes for a speedy recovery Tom... we can't wait to see you back in action. As for the rest of the Patriots, I still predict a fourth Super Bowl title in nine years. If everyone does their job and buys into Belichick's philosophy, no one can beat them. I could play quarterback...

In other news, my life is complete. That's right, folks. At the wedding of Brad Sands, former tour manager of Phish, all four original members of the greatest band ever borrowed the instruments of the wedding band and performed three classic Phish songs. View part of "Julius" at the following link:

The band made no official announcement.

I agree that it's sort of weird to see Fishman wearing a suit and tie rather than his usual on-tour smocky-dress, but still, seeing the four of them together on-stage is a sight for sore eyes! I look forward to seeing the Phab Phour play again at a non-rainy-site-with-a-paved-parking-lot near me.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

The Rose

Yesterday Alison and I, accompanied by Oscar, went climbing in Bolton Notch. We started on a sport route -- actually the site of our first date (which wasn't officially a "date"; rather, it was more of a "let's go climbing" get-together, but, of course it could be argued that it was a date since both of us later admitted to having some romantic interest... anyway, that is totally not the point of this blog entry!)

Anyway, we warmed up at the sport route, er, mentioned above, and then we continued along the base of the cliff. There were a couple of other climbing parties out there, and one of them was in the middle of climbing one of the routes we probably had our eye on. So we continued past and found ourselves looking up at a 100- plus foot high crack in the the rock known as The Rose.

An overhung 5.10 route, the rock is pretty much flat all around the crack, and you would have to lay back and cling to the crack for the entire 100 feet. I would have loved to have laid out my climbing rack and trad climbed it, but I'm not that confident yet, so we hiked around and set up a top-rope from the top. Unfortunately, I didn't have my camera, so we will have to settle for the accompanying image of this nice red flower.

Neither of us scaled The Rose yesterday. I guess we haven't been climbing as much as we would have liked this summer -- and we certainly (until lately) haven't been outside as much as we would have liked. The Rose is totally possible, but it is three times as tall as any route at the gym and its difficulty is sustained the entire way. And, it is difficult to make a project of it because everytime you fall, the route is so overhung that you find yourself hanging by the rope 15 feet away from the rock. Once you fall, you have to get lowered to the ground to start all over again.

But I have a new mission for Autumn 2008: climb The Rose. I'm looking forward to a nice Indian summer and a pleasant fall. And I plan to return the the Notch as often as it takes to climb that thing to the top.

Litter Bugs

I have a gripe. I run about two or three mornings per week on a beautiful Vermont dirt road. A stream runs along part of it, it passes through beautiful hayfields, and it has amazing views and vistas. But every morning, there is new garbage thrown alongside this dirt road. And of course my dog Oscar, who runs with me, gets into it (because that's what dogs do).

People! Throw your damn trash in a garbage can! I am sick of the litterbugs getting my dog in trouble with me. Seriously, why is it that every firepit at a beautiful overlook has broken glass around it, every beach is full of litter, and every dirt road is covered with old take-out food bags and pizza boxes? If you're too lazy to cook your own dinner, at least find a trash can at a gas station and toss your refuse there. Sheesh!

As long as I'm on a rant, one more thing. In my running experience, I have become aware that motorists fall into one of four groups -- in regard to pedestrians (ie runners, walkers, bikers, etc.) Group 1 doesn't even know we're out there. To this group, I guess keep doing what you're doing... I hope you don't hit me. Group 2 is pissed at us. "What the hell are you runners doing on my road?" is the attitude. Again, just please don't hit me. Group 3 is aware and members of this group give me a wide berth everytime. For this, I am appreciative, but you may want to also take note of oncoming traffic -- particularly traffic you can't see. I mean, it's nice that you're giving me lots of room, but just over the hill we're about to crest or around this blind turn, there may be a moving van coming at us at 60mph! The last thing I want is for you to have a head-on, flip over, and land on me. Group 4 gives me a wide berth on the open road, but slows down when they can't see what's ahead. Three cheers for Group 4.

Moral of the story: watch out for pedestrians and don't be a litter bug.