Wednesday, March 31, 2004

NBA Live 2004

I spent the day in San Francisco at CPMC for a Kronos Steering Committee and Change Management training.

I got Jack a copy of NBA Live 2004 to play on the computer. He has become more interested in playing the video game than watching NBA Basketball on television. While I was at spring training, he got Sharon to start playing against him.

Tuesday, March 30, 2004

The Adventures of Seinfeld & Superman

American Express is producing several short films starring Jerry Seinfield and Superman. The first webisode is a four-minute piece, entitled "A Uniform Used to Mean Something," co-written by Seinfeld and directed by film director Barry Levinson. It can be found on the web at The Adventures of Seinfeld & Superman.

Monday, March 29, 2004

Practice Like the Kings 2004

I spent the day at the Glen Cove Conference center attending the Human Resources Leadership Council meeting.

Monday night, Jack and I got a chance to attend a session called Practice like the Kings. Held at Acro Arena, four Kings players and one of the assistant coaches held a loose practice session with about 60 kids. The kids did dribbling, rebounding and shooting drills, stretched and got a tour of the locker room.

Anthony Peeler and Pete Carril ran the dribbling drill, Jabari Smith organized the rebounding drill, Tony Massenburg did the shooting drill and Rodney Buford and one of the King's cheerleaders helped the kids stretch. Mike Bibby was available for photos. Afterwards, they fed us dinner. Jack had a great time!

Sunday, March 28, 2004

Spring Training Day 4

Both Wallen and I were up early Sunday morning. We went out for a 45 minutes run that included downtown Tempe and a climb to the top of Hayden Butte.

Wallen's niece Jenny found a place for breakfast in the phone book called Harlow's. It turned out to be a very popular local breakfast place. By the time we finished and were leaving, there was quite a crowd outside waiting for a table.

We checked out of the hotel and headed for Hohokam Stadium to see the Chicago Cubs play the Oakland A's. The Cubs beat the A's by a score of 3 to 2. Zito pitched 5 2/3 innings for the A's and got the loss.

Heading back to the airport with the rental car was an experience. Phoenix's Sky Harbor International Airport has to be the most confusing layout that I have ever seen. We had a difficult time dropping everyone at different terminals and then finding our way to an off-site rental location. As an aside, I also don't recommend renting a Chrysler Pacifica. Riding in the back of the Pacifica was like being in a cave. Additionally, everyone who drove complained about the sightlines.

Saturday, March 27, 2004

Spring Training Day 3

Wallen snuck out for an early run before 7 a.m. leaving his brother Jim and I asleep in the room. I did not end up getting up until almost 8:30 a.m. While he and Jim went searching for an IHOP, I went out for an hour run by myself. I extended the run from Friday morning. I ended up running for a little over an hour and covering almost 7 miles. By the time, I had a shower and a bite to eat at the hotel, it was time to take off for the game.

We went to Maryvale to see the Brewers play the Marineers. The Milwaukee Brewers beat the Seattle Marineers by a score of 4 to 1. Pineiro pitched six innings for the Marineers and got the loss; he is 0-3 so far in spring training.

These were the best seats that we had on the trip. We were 13 rows back right behind home plate and about four rows behind the scouts with the radar guns. Wallen thinks that Maryvale is the best of the spring training ball parks. It reminds me a lot of Raley Field in Sacramento; you can stand in the concourse at the concession stands and still see the field.

After the game, we headed back to the hotel and spent some time in the pool and the hot tub. I talked part of the group into going to downtown Scottsdale for dinner. It was a zoo with people everywhere. All of the major restaurants along the main drag had at least an hour wait. We wandered a little off the beaten path and the crowds quickly thinned out. We headed up having dinner in a Spanish restaurant called Pepin.

Friday, March 26, 2004

Spring Training Day 2--Sedona

Friday morning, Wallen and I went out for an early run. We ran about 6 miles in 50 minutes heading north on Rural Ave and then west along the Salt River Channel.

The group loaded up and headed to Sedona. Sedona is about an hour and a half drive north of Phoenix. We stopped outside of Sedona for a short hike and a climb up Bell Rock.

Afterwards, we wandered around Sedona and had lunch at a mexican food restaurant called Amara Cantina and a few beers at the Canyon Breeze. The bar at the Canyon Breeze had some great panoramic views overlooking the Oak Creek Canyon and the red rock cliffs. Wallen and I called Tomasin on the his cell phone to see how Julie was doing.

Getting back to Tempe in the evening, we watched the NCAA basketball tournament in the hotel room and had pizzas delivered.

Thursday, March 25, 2004

Spring Training Day 1

Up at a little after 4 a.m., I caught a 7 a.m. flight to Phoenix. John Wallen picked me up at the curb at the airport and by 10 a.m. we were sitting at the hotel pool drinking a beer.

We had tickets to see the Oakland A's play the Chicago Cubs at Phoenix Muncipal Stadium.

Kerry Woods pitched six and a third innings and the Cubs won 2 to 1.

After the game, we headed back to hotel and hung out around the pool to cool down. We had dinner in downtown Tempe at Ruby Tuesday's. I fell asleep on the bed watching the NCAA playoffs.

Wednesday, March 24, 2004

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

I spent most of the day going to and from the bay area for the West Bay CIO meeting. Some of the topics on the agenda included: the implementation of biometrics for desktop and application logons at CPMC; Marin Lessons Learned: MS4, SCM, eMPI and Lawson; and Customer Satisfaction Survey Subgroup.

I finished reading Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, the fourth book in the Harry Potter series. This books felt like it was written to a slightly higher reading level. It is my understanding that this will eventually be a seven book series. I have to admit that I am interested to see where the series is going to go in the next three books.

Tuesday, March 23, 2004

Like watching a train wreck in slow motion

I went out to the Intel Campus in Folsom and had lunch with Sherry. She and I browsed Intel's Information Technology Innovation Center. The center was doing a brown bag presentation so it was not the best time to wander around. The three projects that I did look at included: picture frames and mirrors built around laptops; a digital home entertainment including a media center PC and some linksys wireless components; and an office configuration using bluetooth for mice, keyboards and printers.

Jack and I went to the Sacramento Kings versus Milwaukee Bucks game. The Kings lost to the Bucks by a score of 112 to 101. Over the last two weeks, the Kings have looked nothing like the team that I have watched most of the year; their offensive is out of sync and disjointed. During the whole game, I felt like I was watching a train wreck in slow motion.

While I am not sure that all of the blame can be placed on Weber, it is clear that working him back into the line-up has had an impact. Weber was 4 for 18 against Houston on Sunday night and 7 for 23 against Milwaukee tonight.

Monday, March 22, 2004

Drew will be playing with Kellen Garcia and Matt Lemaire at the Cozmic Cafe in Placerville on Sunday the 28th from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. They are planning on playing a more mellow acoustic set much like last December's show. There will be two other acts playing as well, Jason Motoyama and another band of Matt Lemaire's. The cost should be 5 dollars a person.

Sacramento's weather has been absolutely amazing. We have had more than two weeks of temperatures in the mid-70s to low-80s.

Sunday, March 21, 2004

Kings versus Rockets on ESPNHD

Joe Larkin, Steve Wike, Lew Gasper, Rudy Jugoz and Bobby Hunter came over for dinner and to watch the Sacramento Kings play the Houston Rockets. The Kings started slow, but finished strong in beating the Rockets by a score of 100 to 95. ESPN broadcasted the game in high definition on their ESPNHD channel.

Sharon made a great dinner of chili and cornbread.

Saturday, March 20, 2004

The Passion of Christ

Last weekend, Jack's friend Jeffery stayed overnight with us. Saturday night, Jack went and stayed overnight at Jeffery's house.

We used the opportunity to spend a night out on the town. Sharon has been wanting to go to dinner at Chops; it was voted Best New Restaurant by readers of Sacramento Magazine last year. While the service and my steak were good, we were not impressed by the cut of meat that Sharon had. The salads were also uninspired.

After dinner, we went to see "The Passion of Christ." Ebert describes the movie by saing that "this is the most violent film I have ever seen." While the film is a powerful depiction of the last day of Christ's life, I have to agree with the quote in Ebert's review that the relentless gore is self-defeating. As a side bar, I have felt that Braveheart with its battle scenes was the most violent movie I had ever seen. Braveheart was also directed by Mel Gibson.

Friday, March 19, 2004

Stayed out way too late with Wallen...

The meetings with Microsoft continued on Friday; the agenda items included: Overview of the .Net Strategy, Windows Client Operating Systems Roadmap; Microsoft Office in the Enterprise; Microsoft Executive Discussion; Microsoft Office Live Meeting; Microsoft Research Overview and a Trip to the company store.

I made a little bit of a tactical error and stayed out too late with Wallen. We sat and talked in the bar of a Mexican food restaurant near the hotel until they threw us out. We then grabbed a six pack and headed back to the room. It was probably after 1:00 a.m. by the time I got to sleep. Although I did not fall asleep at any point during the day (I am infamous for sleeping in meetings), I was struggling at a couple points.

The trip to the Microsoft store was cool. They gave us a voucher and we could buy products at the employee discount.

Although the plane left SeaTac about 30 minutes late, we had a fairly uneventful trip back and I was home about 10:00 p.m.

Thursday, March 18, 2004

Redmond, Washington

Wednesday night, most of our senior IT management traveled to Redmond, Washington to spend a couple of days meeting with Microsoft. The agenda on Thursday included: Microsoft Technologies Empowering Physicians and Other Clinicians; Server Operating System Strategy and Direction; Productivity Vision: The Microsoft Center for Information Work; Legacy Migration; and a tour of The Microsoft Enterprise Engineering Center.

John Wallen was flying back from a meeting in Orange County Thursday night and met me at the restaurant where the group was having the dinner. We went out for a couple of beers afterwards.

Wednesday, March 17, 2004

Catching up with Tomasin...

I finally caught up with Tomasin on Tuesday afternoon; I have not talked to him since early October. We talked briefly about Julie; she is scheduled to have a kidney transplant next week. Our thoughts and prayers are with her.

We also talked briefly about David. He is a senior in high school. David has applied to several state colleges, but is not sure what he wants to do.

With Connor getting married for the first time in June, planning has started for a bachelor party in Cabo San Lucas. Initial discussions have centered around the last week of May or the first week of June. Tomasin indicated that there is talk of a week long trip. We agreed that just surviving a long weekend would be a miracle. I am sure that this trip will have several causalities (e.g. Bachman's attempt to fly between balconies in September of 1998).

Tuesday, March 16, 2004

Drew's schedule for spring quarter

Drew's tentative schedule (he is wait listed on two classes) for the spring quarter of his freshman year at the University of California at Irvine includes:

Writing 39B--Critical Reading and Rhetoric: Guided practice in the writing of expository prose. Readings selected from current fiction and nonfiction; writing topics require analysis of the readings and demonstration of rhetorical principles.

Bio Sci 9G--Way Your Body Works: An introduction to the basic mechanisms that control the organ systems of the human body, including the nervous, cardiovascular, immune, and reproductive systems. Emphasis is on how the body works normally, but includes how these processes fail in disease.

Drama 10--Introduction to Production Theory: An introduction to modern production techniques as practiced in realizing scenic designs. Equipment, theories, techniques, and history of production practices in the technical theatre; class instruction integrated with practical applications.

Drama 30C--Acting: Characterization, scenes and auditioning. Development of character in at least three rehearsed scenes from different plays. Script analysis and performance technique. Preparation of audition pieces. The profession of acting. Prerequisites: Drama 30A-B.

Drama 40C--Development of Drama: Contemporary Drama. Post Naturalistic theatre: Expressionism, Epic Theatre, Theatre of the Absurd, and Contemporary American Theatre. Among the playwrights studied are Stein, Shaw, Pirandello, Ionesco, Beckett, Williams, Brecht, Weiss, Albee, Churchill, and Duras. Same as English and Comparative Literature CL 40A, B, C.

Drama 101--Theatre Production: The production courses are offered to give students the opportunity to participate in departmental productions. Students engage in the production and construction of designed work as well as its applied execution during performance. Prerequisite: consent of instructor.

Drama 165--Music Theatre Workshop II: A workshop in audition technique and song interpretation. Admission by audition only. May be taken for credit six times.

Sunday, March 14, 2004

Straight to Heaven...

Sharon took Jeffery and Jack to 9:00 a.m. Mass and then met Jeffery's mom afterwards. The first words out of Sharon's mouth when she got home were "I am going to Heaven for sure now." Both of the boys were out of control: talking to each other and another boy near them, crawling under the pews and repeatedly insisting loudly that they had to go to the bathroom.

Larkin and I went to an early game (12:30 p.m. tip-off) at Arco Arena pitting the Sacramento Kings against San Antonio Spurs. The Kings pulled away in the fourth quarter to win by a score of 101 to 87.

Typically, Sharon fixes a dinner of corned beef and cabbage for St. Patrick's day. Given our schedules this week, she decided to cook it tonight. It was great!

Saturday, March 13, 2004

Jack has gotten to be good friends with Jeffery. They are both in the same kindergarten class and spend the afternoon together at the extended day. They share some common interests, including the Kings; Jeffery parents also have season tickets for the Kings.

Jack and Jeffery started talking about two months ago about having a sleep over at each other house. We talked to the Jeffery's parents at a couple of events, including the auction, and ended up setting up something for this weekend.

Jeffery came over about 2:00 p.m. He and Jack have spent the afternoon playing basketball, ping pong, air hockey and NBA 2004 and Madden 2004 on the computer, racing slot cars, wrestling, watching cartoons and helping Sharon make some brownies.

I spent most of the mid-day outside mowing, edging and weeding. Afterwards, I worked on restarting a project in the upstairs hall that we actually started November 1. We have not done much entertaining over the last four months so we have not been movitated to finish the project. With some things now starting to get on the calendar, we are making finishing the hall project a higher priority.

Friday, March 12, 2004

Drama Kids

Over the last nine weeks, Jack has participated in a Drama Kids International program after school. Today, the kids in the program put on a production. The performance included introductions, group recital of four poems and two skits.

Jack has complained about participating in the program and was particularly animated this morning about not wanting to go to the performance. Nevertheless, he was very engaged in the production and looked like he was having a great time during the actual performance.

Thursday, March 11, 2004

Wednesday, March 10, 2004

Tuesday, March 09, 2004

Weber's worst shooting night in his 11 year career

Sharon and her brother Tim went to the Sacramento Kings and Golden State Warriors game. The Kings escaped with a 96 to 93 victory.

After averaging 24 points in his first three games back, Weber went 2 for 21 from the field and ended up with 5 points. This was the worst shooting percentage that Weber has had in any game in his 11 year career. Watching the game on the NBA League Pass, I could only wonder why Adelman was leaving Weber on the floor! The only bright spot was that Weber had 11 rebounds, including 7 at the offensive end.

I spent the afternoon going to Yuba City for a Lawson Readiness Assessment for the Sutter North Medical Foundation. Larkin called me while I was driving there to harangue me from the deck at the upper lodge at the Mammoth Ski Resort. He wanted me to know that the snow and the weather were great. Joe and Cindy and three other couples are spending a week skiing at Mammoth. I have joined them twice at Mammoth over the last ten years and was trying to keep my calendar open later this week in the hope of joining them again this year.

Sunday, March 07, 2004

The Last Juror by John Grisham

I finished reading The Last Juror by John Grisham. Since June of 1993, I have read seventeen books by Grisham; I am not sure that this is something that I should be proud of...

While I initially compared The Last Juror to A Time to Kill to Sharon when I first started reading it, the voice and tone of the book are more like A Painted House. I definitely enjoyed this book a lot more than either of Grisham's last two legal novels: The Summons and The King of Torts.

In the late morning, Jack and I went to church at Good Shepherd. Jack attended kinderchurch, while I went to Mass.

Saturday, March 06, 2004

Just us guys...

I spent most of the morning working in the yard: the mowing the lawn, moving weeds and spreading fertilizer and pre-emergent. Jack shot baskets and hit a whiffe ball off a tee. Jack's baseball team starts practices on Monday.

The afternoon was filled with more cabling. I worked on adding a third cable from the satellite to the house and making the cross connects. This drop is running to den. I am working on connecting a satellite receiver to the computer in the den. Unfortunately, the set top box appears to be dead and required a call to another help desk in India! urrrghh....

Friday, March 05, 2004

El Retiro San Inigo 2004

Seven of the last eight years, Sharon has spent the first weekend in March at El Retiro San Inigo, the Jesuit Retreat House of Los Altos. She has attended a silent retreat for members of the legal profession. The only year that she missed was the March after Jack was born. Over the years, Sharon has recruited a number of people to go with her, including Andrea and Janie. This year, everyone else was busy and she ended up going by herself.

On her way to the retreat, Sharon planned to stop at Filoli, a property of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. The 654-acre Filoli estate contains a historic house and sixteen acres of formal garden.

I spent the day in San Francisco at CPMC. We organized a meeting with the human resources and payroll representatives from a number of hospitals to reviews the capabilities of the Lawson ERP system. Sutter has spent the last five and a half years implementing the basic ERP system for almost 100 companies. At this point, the organization is probably only using 15% of the capabilities of the system. We are working on developing some strategies to take advantage of some of the more advanced capabilities of the system.

Thursday, March 04, 2004

Long e-mail from Rob Nooter

I got a long e-mail from Rob Nooter in Tanzania on Sunday night. It included some feedback on the pictures of Dar es Salaam that I had posted.

I looked at the photos you sent, and I would say that they are very representative of the way the city center looks. However, we live (and now I work) on a peninsula north of the city (Msasani Peninsula) which is much more residential and nicer. The city center is congested and a teaming African city. We were there on Saturday to pick up a cushion that Barb had made, and it reminded me that I am glad I am not going down there every day anymore. Traffic gets gridlocked and people drive creatively.
KXTV-HDTVLast Thursday night, I was putting Jack to bed and reading him a couple of books. Sharon was watching the end of the second quarter of the Kings and Lakers game in the bonus room. Jack and I could hear her "commenting" on the game; I found out later that she was voicing her frustration with a couple of missed free throws by Vlade.

Two observations... First, I have mentioned that Jack is a huge basketball fan. This really highlights that he has learned this behavior from Sharon and I; we are both avid vocal Kings fans. Second, the last six years has been a remarkable period for the Kings. During this period, they have won almost 2/3s of their games. As someone who has had ticket packages or season tickets since they came here in 1985, it is hard to explain to Jack that the Kings were not always this good. I keep telling Sharon and Jack that we better enjoy the team while it lasts, just look at the 49ers!

Wednesday, March 03, 2004

Cal Ripken Baseball

Last spring, Jack played tee ball. Initially, we signed him up to play another year in the same tee ball league. In December, the coaches from last year's team called and urged us to signed him up for Cal Ripken Baseball, a more competitive league. An organizational meeting for the new team was tonight. The coaches talked about the schedule for the next couple months and passed out uniforms to the kids. Jack is very pleased with the new hat and jersey!

I spent most of the afternoon going to Sutter Amador Hospital in Jackson. We met with the CFO, Lab manager and staff to follow-up on our efforts to address some frustrations that they had with the procurement system.

Tuesday, March 02, 2004

C-Webb returns to Kings lineup

Larkin and I went to the Sacramento Kings and Los Angeles Clippers game. The Kings beat the Clippers by a score of 113 to 106. This game turned into somewhat of an event as Chris Webber returned to the Kings lineup for the first time in ten months. In his return to the court, Webber had 26 points, 12 rebounds and 4 assists.

I never expected Webber to be out of action this long. At the beginning of the year, most of the talk was around him returning in December. At one point in October, Webber actually said he might be ready in a couple more weeks.

I spent most of the day in Sutter Health's steering committee for the outpatient electronic medical record. The excitement in this meeting included a lengthly discussion during the break with four affiliate representatives about their observations and concerns regarding the performance of their wide area network connection.

Monday, March 01, 2004

Day long session with Cisco discussing Wireless Directions

Yvonne Risch, Steve Wike, Joe Larkin, Jon Baker, Sam Warnke, Robert Haubeck and I spent the day at the Cisco Systems Executive Briefing Center in San Jose. The agenda topics included: Wireless Strategy; Self Defending Network Initiative and Network Admission Control;Wireless for Healthcare; Wireless Standards, Hardware and Direction; Wireless Security and Architectures; and, WLSE Roadmap and Demo.

Sutter has deployed wireless networks at a large number of sites for almost two years. We have had a big push recently to install wireless networks in the hospitals to support a key clinical initiative: electronic medication administration. Sutter is rapidly approaching a crossroads and needs to make some key architecture decisions about where we go in the future with wireless, particularly in the area of wireless security, in order to support a wider range of devices.

One minor conclusion that I came to as part of the meeting is that we should be deploying wireless access points in a higher density with a lower power level than we currently are!