Dear Olympics

I just watched the US men’s basketball team receive their bronze metals. They looked ashamed and they should be. They played like crap, but I’ve got a few notes for everyone who is lauding a “new era in international basketball.”

  1. This team was, for the most part, a bunch of B teamers and six men. Allen Iverson and Tim Duncan being the only tried and true starting verterans.
  2. This team only had about a month to prepare for the games. Not much prep time considering many of the other national teams have played together for years.

It’s a joke to think that if true verteran starters were to have played they would have only managed a bronze. Let’s just list a few who could have easily made the Olympic team: Shaq, Kobe, Rip Hamilton, either of the Wallaces, Artest, or Jermaine O’Neal. Hell, we could have sent a team who has played well together (ie. the Detroit Pistons) and won gold.

In other news, the FIG is putting pressure on Paul Hamm to give up his gold. This is crap for a few reasons.

  1. FIG screwed up and it’s against the rules to change the scores.
  2. South Korea didn’t protest the score soon enough. They had their chance and passed it up for some odd reason.
  3. The South Korea contendor was docked 0.10, but replays show an extra release, which would have lead to a 0.20 doc (thus negating his 0.10 lost by the idiot judges). So if you want to play the replay game then he still loses.

What other sports out there would do such a thing? If you’ve already used your instant replay in the NFL you don’t get to put pressure on the other team to give up the win. Sometimes winning includes getting a few calls going your way and I consider this just that.

All hail Ikea

Lauren and I have been spending lots of time at Ikea. We’ve picked out end tables and a TV stand. We’ve also picked out some bedroom stuff. It’s nothing compared to the hand made hickory bedroom set my dad made for us (which, unfortunately, couldn’t fit into either the Focus or the Escort for the move), but it will have to do for now.

We had originally thought we would purchase a couch and chair from Ikea as well, but what they had was crap for the most part. After spending 10 minutes in JC Penny’s furniture department and looking at the prices I knew we wouldn’t be buying our main furniture from Ikea. We ended up getting a really nice couch and chair from JC Penny complete with a 5 year warranty that, get this, covers spills, burns and cuts. You can bet at 4.5 years we’ll be “celebrating” and “accidentally” spill a whole bottle of wine over the whole damn set.

Thanks to the many gift cards we received at the showers we’ll be getting a nice TV from Sears and window dressings from Bed, Bath & Beyond.

We close Monday. I’ll post pics as the place comes together. First thing that goes? The bathroom counter top. Guess who’s going to be on speed dial? My dad, who makes Bob Vila look like a hack.

Day 6

Start: Spokane, WA
End: Seattle, WA
Miles: 279

We made it! It’s been a long trip and I’m glad it’s over. It looks like we’ll be able to close on our place tomorrow or Friday. A trip to Ikea is definitely in order after that. Thanks to everyone for all of the help along.

p.s. The Cascades are easily just as big as the Rockies and suck just as much when trying to pass over the top of them when it’s raining.

Day 5

Start: Bozeman, MT
End: Spokane, WA
Miles: 398.9

The drive started out with waffles for breakfest and warnings of rain on the weather channel. The skies in Bozeman looked great so we weren’t too worried. We had hoped for an easy day through the Rockies. As you can see from the picture, that wasn’t the case.

We hit the upward climb without any issues. On the way up we hit some rain and by the time we had reached the summit it was coming down really hard. The result was a white knuckled trip down the west side of the Rockies that I was more than happy to have over.

I wish it had been nice because we passed some amazing country in Norther Idaho, but it was not to be. Tomorrow our goal is Seattle, which we should make in only a few hours.

Day 4

Start: Rapid City, SD
End: Bozeman, MT
Miles: 513.9

All I have to say is, “Thank GOD for iPod and audio books!” I’ve managed to listen to unabridged versions of both David Sedaris’ “Dress Your Family in Denim an Corduroy” and Carl Hiaasen’s “Skinny Dip”. I’m currently listening to the unabridged version of “Prince of Thieves” by Chuck Hogan. All of which have been great books.

Today started out early and we needed all the time we could get. We spent time in South Dakota, Wyoming (a state I’ve actually lived in) and ended up in Montana. It was quite the trip considering we hit the foothills and a crapload of wind. There were times when my car simply wouldn’t go any faster, even with the pedal floored (didn’t help I had a huge air brak on the top of my car in the form of a car top carrier).

The landscape is the type of terrain that commands respect. Vast stretches of nothing broken up with large hills, plateaus, etc. I can appreciate the draw of this type of land, but the severe lack of what I consider necessities will forever keep me at bay. Don’t ask how I snapped these pictures either.

Day 3

Start: Sioux City, IA
End: Rapid City, SD
Miles: 428

After waking up refreshed from my recent bout of ensypaltoidus, or whatever the hell was ailing me, we were reading to hit the road again. The trip was boring for the most part, but did end on a high note with a quick trip to Mt. Rushmore, which I find more amazing each time I visit it.

Lauren wasn’t too enthused about visiting the monument, but I like to think she at least appreciated the monument once there (it beats the pants off any of the puny monuments in D.C. she is used to visiting).

After that we spent the night at an extremely expensive Comfort Inn. This was mildly offset by the fact that they had free Internet in the room and a deluxe breakfast in the morning. Of course Crash had to spend the night in the car through a rain storm because of a $100 pet surcharge that both Lauren and I were unwilling to pay.

Day 2

Start: Des Moines, IA
End: Sioux City, IA
Miles: 198

I woke up that morning with a mild stomach ache. I didn’t really think anything of it until about 40 miles outside of Des Moines, IA. The rumblings started and it wasn’t long before I pulled off and started losing my proverbial lunch.

After driving and stopping every few rest stops I finally gave up just outside of Sioux City after only a few hours of driving. I could tell Lauren was disappointed, but she knew I couldn’t go on alternating between puking and driving.

Needless to say I spent the entire day and night in bed fighting what I can only figure was a mild bout of food poisoning. The picture of me was that morning in Des Moines looking extremely fat next my extremely packed Focus.

Day 1

Start: Ypsilanti, MI
End: Des Moins, IA
Miles: 566.4

The day started out with a few last minute errands. Cleaning up the old apartment, filling out mail forward cards and turning in our keys. Just before we started off for I-94 my iPod came on playing “On the Road Again” by Willie Nelson, almost as if it knew what lay ahead. Not much to report on this leg of the trip. We rounded Chicago and hit I-80 on our way to Des Moines. We stopped at some family run motel that advertised free WiFi.

Gearing up for the move

Moving sucks. Moving across country sucks even more. Moving across country in a 2000 Ford Focus and a 1999 Ford Escort sucks the most. Lauren and I have slowly been consolidating our lives and packing it away into small boxes for the last few days. Amazingly, there have been few disputes over what should go, what should be stored and what should be tossed.

We’ve sold our TV (sniff – my 32 inch Sony Trinitron), my 17 inch Samsung LCD, many other computer parts, DVD’s, desks, chairs, couches, etc. All in an effort to fit our entire lives into two compact cars. Crash has a feeling something is up. He’s been freaking out for most of the week as he’s watched his surroundings change drastically. If he only knew he’d be spending about 40 hours in a car with me over the next week …

I’d like to take a few seconds to thank my parents for giving my TV a loving home, my brother for graciously taking some of my DVD’s and various computer parts off my hands (and letting Homer into his home), Lauren’s Aunt Dottie for trading us a regular bed for an air bed, Lauren’s grandparents for giving us their car top carrier, Lauren’s mom for helping coordinate a lot of these trades and, finally, my Uncle Mike for making sure my father’s hand-made bedroom is in good hands until I can figure out how the hell to get it out to Seattle. Thank you all.

See you all in Seattle!

Seattle Here We Come!

Laure and I have purchased a one bedroom condo in the heart of the Capital Hill district in Seattle, WA. It’s a decent sized 630 sq. ft. condo in an older, but recently refurbished building, called The Ambassador. Feel free to take a peek at soon-to-be home.

If you are looking for a great city with lots to do and decent prices for purchasing then you may wish to check out Seattle. It has mild weather, a great tech industry (Microsoft, Amazon.com and Real Networks to name a few), mountains near by and the ocean. Imagine San Francisco only on a slightly smaller scale.

Lauren and I will be moving at the end of August. If you’d like to get together before then please email us or give us a call. Ack! Two weeks and I’ll be living on the other side of the country. Things move fast.