Sunday, December 28, 2008

Just be happy I don't twitter.

Because if I did, you would see a lot of this:

17:00 12/23/08 Stuck in traffic
18:00 12/23/08 Still stuck in traffic
18:30 12/23/08 Not out of LA. Gone 5 miles in last hour
19:00 12/23/08 Still stuck in traffic
20:00 12/23/08 Over Grapevine, not raining yet
22:00 12/23/08 Taking a nap while Nico drives
23:00 12/23/08 Starting to rain
02:30 12/24/08 California is huge
02:45 12/24/08 10 and a half hour drive, and now we're sleeping in an RV?

Nico and her sisters have gone facebook crazy. Evidently, they update their facebook pages more often than they do their blogs: #1, #2, #3. I would know for sure, but we are not yet friends.

I finally got around to updating my own facebook page. (Really all I did was add my real name to the page...I had originally created the thing because I kept getting emails from old friends who were trying to add me to their list of friends.)

Note to readers: Feel free to add me as a friend, but don't expect too much in the way of content over on the facebook page.

Facebook readers who happen to make it over here: Yes, this is about as good as this blog gets. And yes, if we went to elementary school together, I am dying to hear from you.
These are a few of my favorite things

Riding the cable cars for no apparent reason, except that you can buy an all day pass for $11.

The birthplace of Irish coffee. (Hey, it's not any more touristy than cable cars.)

Seeing the unexpected.

Ice skating in the middle of the City. Lasko trivia: Nico and I own our own ice skates. This might only sound unusual to my local readers . (Note: Owning your own ice skates becomes a bit of a chore, as you find yourself dragging them on vacations where you think there might be an ice skating rink. Ice skates are heavy.)
Serenity Now

A photo I snapped at the Japanese Tea Garden moments before a squirrel decided he was entitled to my bowl of crackers/cookies. I was able to wrestle the bowl away from him, but he did get away with an almond cookie. Also, he caused me to spill my cup of tea.

Score: Squirrel 2; Lasko 0

Sunday, December 21, 2008

The addiction kicks into high gear...

(Alternative title was: Will someone please tell Nicole that it is a Lasko family tradition to open Hanukkah presents on the morning of Hanukkah Eve?)

(Alternative title #2 was: Screw You Bill Gates.)

Nico gave me a cool Dell Mini for this the first night of Hanukkah. (Don't be too impressed with Nicole, I think it was free as part of a promotion with the far more expensive laptop she bought for herself.)

To make things interesting, the Mini comes standard with greatest accomplishment of the year was getting pokerstars to run on the thing with only about a half hour of effort. I'll be coming to a Starbucks near you soon.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Near 18 wheel pileup

Nico and I were on our way home from a crepe run this morning when we were unfairly reprimanded for avoiding a 9 bicycle (give or take) accident.

We're the purple arrow in the picture above. We need to make a left at the fork to get's not the easiest turn on a tandem even when there is no traffic, and today many other bicyclists were out enjoying the 42 degree air (actually, it was probably up to 50 for the ride home). From the left, I see at least 4 bicycles moving at considerable speed; one of them was another tandem. I didn't even bother looking right, as I knew there was no way I could make the turn ahead of these bikes. So we stopped. I was probably a foot from the right hand shoulder; I could have been a little farther over, but this was an unplanned stop. At this point, the other tandem decides to make a right (which again is a pretty difficult turn without traffic)...either their high speed, or our presence (still stopped) on the path causes them to do a rough dismount. (I say: "Nice paint" as their non-Santana appeared to be painted in the same shade of Dupont Shadeshifter as ours--my comments were ignored by the other tandem team). Before the path has cleared, 4 more bicycles come up from behind us. The last bike in line yells: "Tandem, you can't just stop there." I think he came closer to hitting one of his riding partners than us. I yelled back (a little too late): "I have to disagree".

After looking at the aerial shot, I've come to the conclusion that any bike coming from behind us should have seen us from 200 feet away. Does anyone reading this think I should have done something differently?
Don't know much about Biology

Three nights a week I have been going to ProSport Physical Therapy for an hour or two of torture. [Open that link at your own risk; my browser is telling me it's dangerous...] I'd go into great detail about the torture, except it really isn't very interesting. Now you're thinking: "Nothing on this blog is very interesting..." But I digress. ProSport is kind of interesting because they treat a lot of pro athletes. It makes me wonder, if I saw Shawn Green or Paul Kariya out of uniform, would I recognize either of them? Although their jerseys (and a hundred others) hang in the gym, I figure they would not be wearing them during their torture sessions.

Anyway, after humiliating me in an inchworm race, one of the PT aides asked how much chemistry I had to take to become a pharmacist. (You need one year of general chem to become a physical therapist, I am told).

So I counted:
1 year general chem
1 year organic chem
1 quarter analytical chem (also called quantitative analysis)
1 year biochemistry
2 years medicinal chemistry

Chemistry was not one of my stronger subjects. I would say I'm in the wrong profession, but I can't recall having the need to use any chemistry since graduating.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Just like a merit badge...

At least I think it's just like a merit badge.

The Rainbow Girls have these patchwork quilts. (Nicole has several of them, and if anybody thinks patchwork quilts are at all interesting, I can post some pictures.) I think when you accomplish something or provide some sort of service, you get a square...eventually someone sews all your squares into a quilt, and you get a quilt rack. (I can post a picture of one of those too, if anyone is interested.)

So anyway, Nicole has been gluing crucifixes and pineapples on a quilt rack over the past week; today, said quilt rack made it's way out to the garage. As I returned from bicycling, a strange woman appeared and said: "I'm here for the quilt rack." My first thought was to ask: "Who the hell are you?" But then I realized that as long as she was taking the quilt rack away, I really didn't care. After she left, I was kicking myself for not offering her another one.
Low budget tri bike

(Alternative title was: "Because everybody loves a big blue penis." But then I thought: "Nobody loves a big blue fact, the only thing worse than a big blue penis is two big blue penises.")

Since the doc ordered me to cut out the running, I have switched to bicycling. Unfortunately, a couple of years of hanging in the garage caused my tires to deteriorate. Fortunately, I love buying bicycle parts...

I started off with these cool blue tires. They are super fast...I might try them on the tandem. And all that blue got me thinking: "I need some new handlebar tape..." Then the new handlebar tape got me thinking: "I need new handlebars..."

After 60 miles of riding with the clip-on aero bars here's my review:

1) I'm much faster
2) I look cool (or at least as cool as one can look riding a Schwinn)

1) The bars are adjustable in like 16 will take me 6 months to get them set right
2) In order to get them setup comfortably, they cover just about everywhere I might want to put my hands on the drop bars
3) The brakes are really far away
4) My scapula hurts

Monday, December 01, 2008

The carny asked my dad if that was Steve Poltz on the tube.

(Alternative title was: Number Nine, Number Nine, Number Nine, Number Nine.)

The sun was out, gas was cheap, and bicycling 90 miles seemed like a really bad idea. And so we took a little drive down the coast.

The tortoises also found the weather to be just perfect. Here's Number 5 (she's like a hundred and something) and her diminutive friend Shellie (Shellie is actually much, much smaller than number 5...artists call that perspective, or something).

Later, we headed to the mall, where Steve Poltz was playing a gig at the Apple Store. I know you are probably asking yourself: "Who the hell is Steve Poltz?"

He's the occasional lead singer of the Rugburns. He wrote some really irritating Jewel songs. And maybe you've heard this one in a Jeep commercial:

[The old man who walked into the frame is Father John, a local priest; he requested to hear some songs about church buses.]

Once again, I am reminded that I said I would not be posting any more pictures of myself...but if Steve Poltz is allowed to post pictures of himself with Peter Buck (of REM), I should be allowed to post pictures of myself with Steve Poltz. [If you're keeping score, this gives me a Michael Stipe number of 3.]