Saturday, May 25, 2019

John Wick

Unfortunately, the day went in some unplanned directions...

Sharon, Jack and I finished the day watching John Wick. This has been on my AppleTV wish list for some time. Bill Simmons et al have talked about the movie and its sequels on his podcast off and on over the last year.

John Wick is a 2014 American neo-noir action thriller film. It stars Keanu Reeves, Michael Nyqvist, Alfie Allen [Theon Grayly in Game of Thrones], Adrianne Palicki, Bridget Moynahan, Dean Winters, Ian McShane, John Leguizamo, and Willem Dafoe. Reeves plays a retired hitman.

It is the first installment in the John Wick film series. Two sequels, John Wick: Chapter 2, and John Wick: Chapter 3 - Parabellum, were released on February 2017 and May 2019 respectively.

I think that we all enjoyed the movie. It is a nonstop violent action movie. I recommend it as a mindless distraction...

Friday, May 24, 2019

Deion's Double Play

Friday night, I watched Deion's Double Play. This is the twenty-seventh installment of ESPN's 30 for 30 Volume 3. An episode guide for Vol 3 is here.

During the 1992, Deion Sanders played in both football and baseball. As a utility outfielder for the Atlanta Braves, Deion led the entire major leagues in triples (14), stole 26 bases and had the second highest batting average (.304) on the Braves roster. As an Atlanta Falcons cornerback and kick returner, he was in the fourth year of his career.

While the film looks broadly at Sanders' career, it focuses on the weekend of October 11, 1992. He played in a MLB LCS game on Saturday night in Pittsburg. After the game, Nike flew him to Atlanta in a charter for a Sunday NFL Falcon's game. After that game, Deion flew back to Pittsburg for a Sunday night MLB playoff game in Pittsburg.

Deion is not only the only player to hit an MLB home run and score an NFL touchdown in the same week. He's also the only man to have played in a World Series AND a Super Bowl.

I enjoyed the documentary. I didn't realize how much baseball Deion had played. He played a nine-year, part-time baseball career, playing left and center field in 641 games with four teams.

Thursday, May 23, 2019

Fear: Trump in the White House by Bob Woodward

My book for May is Fear: Trump in the White House by by Bob Woodward. Larkin mentioned that he and Cindy were reading the book when we were at the Petersen Shootout and I decided to read it.

Some general observations about the book include:
  • I have always wondered about Jared and Ivanka's roles. You get a little bit of a glimpse in the book that they have their fingers in things more than I expected.
  • I came away with more respect for both Mattis and Tillerson. In particular, it seems like Mattis worked very hard to be the adult in the room.
  • There are an astonishing number of quotes from people in key meetings. I am amazed that Woodward was able to get and use these quotes... Frankly, while I don't doubt Woodward, I have become a little leery of quotes.

I have noted before that Trump is very thin-skinned and that he plays fast and loose with the truth. There is a third issue highlighted in this book. As a leader in a big organization, I believe that you need to willing to listen to everyone's feedback and challenge your own world view. Trump is portrayed as being very dogmatic about a number of his core beliefs...

This is not a great book. I would give it a "B-" at best. I feel like the book tends to wander from anecdote to anecdote. It is an unsettling view into what is going on in the Executive Branch today.

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Jack is back!

Jack caught an Uber from the Georgetown Campus at 2:12 pm. He was at Dulles Airport by 2:50 pm.

Jack boarded a 5:10 pm United flight nonstop from Dulles to Sacramento. He was on the ground in Sacramento just after 8:15 pm. Sharon and I scooped him up.

It is great to have him home! It is impossible for me to believe that he is a raising senior!

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Dinner with the Sanborns

Sharon and I met the Sanborns for dinner on Monday night at Paul Martins. I had a Seared Ahi Salad [mixed greens, soba noodles, oranges, red peppers, tomatoes, golden beets, green onion, ginger chile vinaigrette], while Sharon had a Steakhouse Cobb [mesquite-grilled Angus, eld greens, avocado, bacon, Shaft blue cheese, tomato, egg, blue cheese vinaigrette].

Monday, May 20, 2019

Quest Tech

Larkin and I played in the Quest Tech golf tournament at the Granite Bay Golf Course. The tournament was a scramble format. We played with Joe [SAFE Credit Union] and Joshua [Palo Alto Networks].

After feeling good on the the driving range, I struggled all day. It is probably the worst that I have ever hit a golf ball. I always feel like I have a hard time getting a consistent rhythm in a scramble tournament, but this has to be the worst I have ever done.

We ended up using three of my drives, including over the water on the first hole. Unable to card a birdie, the group was five over.
As we were standing on the 16th tee, a ball landed over our carts. It turns out it was Doug Christie's ball. He came over to apologize. Larkin got a picture with him. I have a picture with Doug Christie and his wife from a Quest Even fifteen years ago...

Sunday, May 19, 2019

Game of Thrones - Season Eight

Sunday night, Sharon and I watched the series finale of Game of Thrones. While Sharon watched this season with me, she has only really watched the first season of the show. She and I watched the first season together more than three years ago, while I was reading the first book.

The series premiered on HBO in the United States on April 17, 2011. It concluded Sunday night with 73 episodes broadcast over eight seasons. I finished season one in October 2012, season two in February 2013 and season three in June 2013.

My summary for the eighth season is something that I stole from a podcast. The Storm of Spoilers podcast kept saying “efficiency is coming.” David Benioff and D. B. Weiss had the ending from George Martin, but the pacing of the last season is so different from the first four seasons. With the rich source material, the first four seasons had a leisurely pace that allowed for a much richer character development. The rapid pace of the eighth season doesn't allow for the plot to proceed organically; it feels forced. It would have taken Martin two thousands to get all of this done...

I think that they should have done two ten episode seasons in seasons 7 and 8. This would have allowed them to set up the ending better. I am still not sure I understand why they did shorter seasons.

In spite of my criticism about a rush to the end this season, I enjoyed season eight and the series finale. I am going to add the second book to my reading list for the next year.

Saturday, May 18, 2019

Veep - Season Seven

Saturday night, Sharon and I watched the series finale of Veep. Veep is an American political satire comedy series created by Armando Iannucci. It is an American spin of the premise of his 2005 BBC series, The Thick of It. The series premiered on HBO on April 22, 2012. During the course of the series, 65 episodes of Veep aired over seven seasons.

Veep received critical acclaim and won several major awards, including six consecutive nominations for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Comedy Series, winning that award for its fourth, fifth, and sixth seasons. Its second, fourth, and sixth seasons won the Writers Guild of America Award for Television: Comedy Series, and its third season won the Television Critics Association Award for Outstanding Achievement in Comedy.

The series starred Julia Louis-Dreyfus as Selina Meyer, the Vice President of the United States (or "Veep"), and later President of the United States. Over the course of the seven seasons, Louis-Dreyfus received widespread critical acclaim for her performance, winning a record-breaking six Primetime Emmy Awards and three Screen Actors Guild Awards, and receiving five consecutive Golden Globe nominations.

Although season seven jumps the shark more than a little in a couple of spots, I enjoyed it. I was confused about how they were going to wrap up the series, but got a kick out of the approach that they used...

Friday, May 17, 2019

Foster's Bighorn

While Larkin, Gainsley and I were at the Petersen Shootout, we started talking about the three couples getting together for dinner. I threw out the idea that we go to dinner at Foster's Bighorn. I don't think that I have been there in more than fifteen years.

Late Friday afternoon, the Larkins met us at our house. Larkin, Cindy, Sharon and I slogged our way through the traffic to Rio Vista. We met the Gainsleys at the bar.

Standing at the bar, a group asked us to help sing happy birthday to the owner. In one of those odd twists of fate, the owner turned out to be Howard Lamothe. Sharon, Larkin and I have worked with his brother Paul at Farm Credit since the 80's. Sharon spent some time talking to Howard. He has owned the bar and restaurant for more than fifteen years.

Part of the goal of the dinner was to talk about a possible China cruise in '21. I think that the Gainsleys and Heringers will eventually commit to a Viking cruise. The Larkins are still playing with a couple of different trips options for '20 and '21, including a trip to Spain and Portugal and a Southern American cruise like Tom did... The Gainsleys are actually taking off on a Viking cruse of Scandinavia on Sunday.

I had a New York steak for dinner, while Sharon had a ribeye. The portions were ample, but the food was only so so. Sharon and I lamented later that we probably should have just had the Bison burger. You don't go to Foster's for the food, but the atmosphere.

After dinner, we wound our way back to Carmichael. I enjoyed everyone's company a great deal! Hopefully, we can pull off a larger trip together.

Thursday, May 16, 2019

From Kansas City to the Open House

Every once in a while, we will schedule a travel day out of necessity that I dread and then regret once I get into the middle of trip. Wanting to make sure that I got back to Roseville for the new building open house, this was one of those days.

After going to the Royals game on Wednesday night, I got up at 3 am. I caught an Uber to the airport about 3:40 am. Unfortunately, I had brought a big suitcase with me on the trip that I had to check. I was shocked at the baggage check line for Southwest at 4:10 am in the morning. Luckily, it moved very fast. I checked my bag and was through Pre-TSA security by 4:30 am.

I caught a 5:30 am Southwest flight from Kansas City to Denver. Boarding with A41, I was able to get the aisle exit row behind the two seats. Landing just after 6 am local time, I had a two hour plus layover in Denver and got a leisurely breakfast.

With an A36 boarding pass, I caught a 8:30 am flight from Denver to Sacramento. I ended up with a very nice exit row seat in a Boeing 737-800. We were on the ground in Sacramento before 10 am. Somehow, I missed my bag when it first came up. I didn't see it until almost everyone was gone!?! I was home about 11:10 am.

After getting cleaned up and having some lunch I headed into work. Adventist Health had scheduled an open house for friends and family from 4 pm to 7 pm. Sharon really wanted to get a chance to tour the new building plus I had a sense of responsibility to be there for the open house.

Sharon and I ended up walking a big part of the building, including the C-Suite. Overall, she was very impressed with the building.

We finished the night with dinner at Paul Martins [fish tacos]. On my feet and moving for almost 21 hours straight, I crashed hard at the end of the day...

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Tech Summit

I spent the day in a Tech Summit with Cerner at their Innovations Campus in Kansas City. The agenda included: Kickoff; Introductions; Prayer; Architectural Overview; Emerging Technology; Oracle; Break; iBus Architecture (Grand Model); LightsOn Overview; Lunch; eHosting Opportunities; Network; Break; Future Cloud Architecture, and; IAM Discussions.

We finished the day at the Kansas City Royals versus Texas Rangers MLB game. Scoring two runs in the top of the first, the Rangers never looked back and won the game by the score of 6 to 1. We had some nice Diamond Club seats (Table 8, Row 1, Seat 3).

Kansas City Royals versus Texas Rangers

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Kansas City from the Skybar at the Cerner Experience Center

View of Kansas City from the Skybar at the Cerner Experience Center

Cerner Cybersecurity Conference

I spent a long day at a Cybersecurity Conference at the new Cerner Experience Center.

Tuesday, May 14 
7:15 - 8:15 a.m. Breakfast
8:15 - 8:30 a.m. Welcome 
8:30 - 9:15 a.m. Cybersecurity and intelligent health networks 
9:15 - 10 a.m. Cybersecurity landscape in health care today 
10 a.m. Break 
10:15 - 11 a.m. Insider threats
11 - 11:45 a.m. Good cybersecurity hygiene - a culture change - Cherokee Nation Health Services
11:45 a.m.- 12:45 p.m. Lunch
12:45 - 1:30 p.m. NIST Controls -- building a stronger cybersecurity program 
1:30 - 2:15 p.m. P2 Sentinel - mitigating internal threats
2:15 - 2:45 p.m.
 LightsOn Review
2:45 - 3 p.m. Break
3 - 3:45 p.m.
 Panel: Challenges - don't throw in the towel
3:45 - 4:45 p.m.
 Group 1: Experience Theater
 Medical device vulnerabilities
 Group 2: Community Engagement Forum
 Community outreach security implications
4:45 - 5 p.m. Wrap up 
5 - 5:45 p.m. Networking
5:45 - 7 p.m. Dinner - Sponsored by Cybereason

Monday, May 13, 2019

To Kansas City

Downtown Kansas City from the 37th Floor of the SheratonUp at 5 am, I caught a 8 am Southwest Flight from Sacramento to Phoenix. I was shocked how quickly I checked my bag and got through security. It literally took me 14 minutes from parking my car to sitting down on the other side of security!

Boarding with A38, Southwest did something that I haven't seen before. After A1 to A30, they opened the side door and let the group starting at A31 board from the back. Loading from the back, I was able to get an exit row aisle.

With an almost two hour layover in Phoenix, I had an early lazy lunch at the Barrio Cafe in Concourse D. I had a surprisingly good Arizona Burrito.

Boarding at 11:30 am with A26, I got a very nice exit row aisle seat. I was on the ground in Kansas City by 4:30 pm. It was an easy trip that passed quickly.

I caught an Uber into the city. I will be spending three nights at the Sheraton at Crown Center.

After a walk/run on the treadmill, I had a late dinner at the bar at Spectators. I had a turkey melt. I had an odd experience. The place was empty when I walked in after 8 pm. When I left at 9 pm, the bar was packed with people ordering food.

Sunday, May 12, 2019

Mother's Day 2019

Still feeling under the weather and trying to get back on my feet, I did some shopping in the early afternoon. Sharon and Tom rolled back from the retreat in the afternoon. It really turned out to be a lost weekend for me.

I made dinner for Mother's day. I barbecued some ribeye steaks, baked a couple of potatoes and cooked some broccoli.

For a Mother's Day gift, I got her a cologne collection from Jo Malone. She shopped at this store and bought some cologne when we were in London.

We finished the day watching the super-sized penultimate episode of Game of Thrones. While Weiss and Benioff may be moving towards Martin's intended ending, the transformation of the dragon queen into the bad king seems to ring a little false. My guess is that we will never see Martin's version of the ending...

Saturday, May 11, 2019

Lost Weekend

Starting to feel bad on Friday, I crashed hard on Saturday. I literally slept more than 20 of Saturday's 24 hours. With Sharon gone on a retreat for the weekend, I only dragged myself out of bed to feed Tiber and Luna and take Tiber for a couple of short walks... Given the number of things that I was hoping to get done in preparation for the engagement party, it was very discouraging.

Friday, May 10, 2019

To El Retiro San Inigo

Sharon and Tom are spending the weekend at El Retiro San Inigo, the Jesuit Retreat House of Los Altos. They are attending a retreat titled Conversing with Creation.

Feeling under the weather, I finished the week watching the Golden State Warriors versus Houston Rockets in game five of the second round of the Western Conference playoffs. Playing without Kevin Durant, the Warriors beat the Rockets by the score of 118 to 113. Stephen Curry was 0 for 5 in the first half, but scored 33 points in the second half. I would have bet a fair amount of money against the Warriors winning...

Thursday, May 09, 2019

The Last Days of Knight

Saturday while Sharon was in Southern California, I watched The Last Days of Knight. This is the twenty-fourth installment of ESPN's 30 for 30 Volume 3. An episode guide for Vol 3 is here. I haven't kept up with the 30 for 30 series over the last couple of years; there are more than a dozen documentaries that I haven't seen.

The film starts by looking briefly at Bob Knight's career. After briefly coaching at Army from 1965 to 1971, Knight coached at Indiana University from 1971 to 2000. While at Indiana, Knight led his teams to three NCAA championships, one National Invitation Tournament (NIT) championship, and 11 Big Ten Conference championships. His 1975–76 team went undefeated during the regular season and won the 1976 NCAA tournament. By 2000, the film paints Knight was one of the most powerful people at the university and in some ways in the state of basketball crazy Indiana.

The documentary is told from an unusual angle. In April 1999, Robert Abbott, a producer for CNN/Sports Illustrated, began reporting a story investigating why three high school All-Americans had left Knight's program over the prior two years. The film is directed and narrated by Abbott. It is a behind-the-scenes look at the investigation and its ultimate ramifications.

I was pleasantly surprised by this 30 for 30. It is a story with which I was only passingly familiar. Although it was an hour and forty minutes long, it never dragged or seemed slow. The follow-up story on one of the players that left the program is heart wrenching. It is a documentary worth looking for. It motivates me to go back and watch more of the 30 for 30s that I have missed.

Tuesday, May 07, 2019

Miami Vice

Last Friday night while Sharon was in Southern California, I watched Miami Vice as a rental on the AppleTV. Several weeks ago, I heard Colin Farrell interviewed on the Bill Simmons podcast. They reviewed Farrell's career and talked a lot about this movie. I added it to the watch list on the AppleTV.

The movie is a 2006 American action crime thriller film about two Miami-Dade police detectives, Crockett and Tubbs, who go undercover to fight drug trafficking operations. It was written, directed, and produced by Michael Mann. The film is an adaptation of the 1980s television series of the same name on which Mann was an executive producer. It film stars Jamie Foxx as Tubbs and Colin Farrell as Crockett.

Jamie Foxx had just won an Oscar for his portrayal of Ray Charles. He frankly didn't seem very engaged in the movie.

I found the middle of the movie slow. While it was interesting to see a young Colin Farrell, I didn't really enjoy the movie. There are lots more interesting things to watch. I don't recommend the film.

Sunday, May 05, 2019

Sharon back from SoCal

Sharon and Mary Maloney spent the day at The Huntington Library. The Huntington Library, Art Collections and Botanical Gardens is a collections-based educational and research institution established by Henry E. Huntington (1850–1927) and located in San Marino. In addition to the library, the institution houses an extensive art collection with a focus on 18th- and 19th-century European art and 17th- to mid-20th-century American art. The property also includes approximately 120 acres of specialized botanical landscaped gardens, most notably the "Japanese Garden", the "Desert Garden", and the "Chinese Garden" (Liu Fang Yuan).

Sharon caught an early evening Southwest flight from Burbank back to Sacramento. The flight left about 20 minutes late. She was home just after 7:30 pm.