Monday, September 16, 2019

143,880 steps

For the sixth week in a row, I averaged more than 20,000 steps a day with 143,880 steps.

143,880 steps

Sunday, September 15, 2019

Andrew & Shannon's Wedding - Day 4

Sharon made eggs, sausage and toast for breakfast. Afterwards, I walked from our VRBO back to Switzer Farm where the wedding party was staying. From the main parking lot on the property, you have to cross a bridge and walk through a barn to get to the house. On Friday morning, we hung a wide variety of pictures from all the families along one wall of the barn. It was a very cool space. I lingered, sipped my coffee and enjoyed the pictures.
Andrew & Shannon's Wedding - Day 4Andrew & Shannon's Wedding - Day 4
Andrew & Shannon's Wedding - Day 4Andrew & Shannon's Wedding - Day 4
After visiting with the wedding party, I wandered back to the rental. We backed up and headed back to the Switzer Farm about 11 am. We ended up spending about an hour hanging out with everyone as they scrambled to pack up and load out of the property.

Andrew and Shannon's Wedding - Day 4

Andrew and Shannon will be spending Sunday night at our VRBO. Shannon's uncles have the house next door.

We eventually rolled towards Carmichael just before noon. With two short stops, it took us 4 1/2 hours to get home.

At 7:15 pm, we took Jack back to the airport. He caught a 9:15 pm United flight from Sacramento to Newark and then a flight from Newark to National Airport in DC.

As I told Renteria in a text message:
fantastic wedding. gorgeous venue. beautiful weather. lots of love. Sharon and I were very immersed in the events over the course of the four days. I had a great group of friends there for Friday and Saturday nights: Tomasins, Wallens, Snipes, Larkins.
I will post more pictures, artifacts and observations over the next two weeks...

Saturday, September 14, 2019

Andrew & Shannon's Wedding - Day 3

Sharon made an early breakfast of eggs, sausage and toast. Afterwards, for the second day in a row, I went out for an early morning run. I started north of Westport on Highway 1 for about a mile before I headed back to the Switzer Farm. Looping around the farm, I stopped and visited with the wedding party. By the time I got back to the house, I covered about 3 3/4 miles.

In the mid-morning, Sharon and I went back to the wedding venue to set up a few things. With some help from Kellen and Spencer, we got everything set up for the sparkler send off. We then drove down to the cliff where the actual wedding ceremony was going to take place. We pre-positioned a couple of tables, a pot and crystal vessels of water and sand. During the ceremony, they were going to pot a plant.

Back at the house, we got cleaned up. We headed back to the Switzer Farm about 1:45 pm. I ended up having to carry the plant for the potting ceremony down to the cliffs in my suit. As I was walking down, the fog started to roll in. Thankfully, it cleared back up in about 30 minutes and was beautiful for the rest of the day!

People started to show up about 2:30 pm. At one point, I wandered up to the house where Drew and a group were playing music in the front room. I bounced back and forth between the house and the barn for about an hour.

Sharon and I were part of the wedding procession walking down to the cliff from the house. As my sister Lee Ann posted, it was the longest walk to the altar ever.

It was a very nice wedding ceremony. Jack started it off with an e.e. cummings reading. The program for the ceremony is here.

We had an opportunity to be part of the family pictures. I am looking forward to getting a copy of the photo of Sharon, Jack, Drew, Shannon and I for the Christmas card.

I enjoyed the rest of evening immensely. Our table at dinner included the Wallens, Tomasins, Snipes, Larkins, my sister Lee Ann and her husband Dean and my sister Sharon. I wandered around the long farm table repeatedly to visit with everyone.

Shannon's mom and dad and the best man Spencer made nice speeches and toasts after dinner. I never did see them cut a cake...

Madi Sipes and her band played a long set followed by a DJ. I spent a while sitting and talking to Kyle late in the evening. The sparkler send off at the end of the evening was a success. It was after 11 pm by the time we drove back to the rental.

Friday, September 13, 2019

Andrew & Shannon's Wedding - Day 2

Up early, I went out for a 2 3/4 mile run. I ran up to Switzer Farm and looped around the 20 acre property. With the wedding party staying on site, I stopped and visited. I ran through the very small town and then down on to the Westport Headlands beach before heading back to the house.

Back at the VRBO, I rallied Sharon and Jack. We went back to the Switzer Farm and had brunch with the wedding party.

Dropping Sharon and Jack back at the rental, I drove back to the wedding venue. I spent the morning and early afternoon helping get everything set up. I staged the wine for the Shandrewpalooz. From the main parking lot on the property, you have to cross a bridge and walk through a barn to get to the house. We hung a wide variety of pictures from all of the families along one wall of the barn. It was a very cool space.

Eventually, I headed back to the VRBO and got cleaned up. It was really nice to have the place so close to the wedding venue.

At 3:00 pm, every one got together for the rehearsal. It is about one-fifth of a mile walk from the house down to the spot on the cliffs where Andrew and Shannon are getting married. We walked through the ceremony.

The rehearsal dinner was on the front porch of the house. Sharon and I hosted the dinner. We supplied wine paired with each course. The menu is here. Drew's mom made a decision not to attend.

My toast for the rehearsal dinner was an epic fail. More on that in a future post.

After dinner, they invited all of the wedding guests to an evening of music that they billed as the Shandrewpalooz. Tomasins, Wallens, Snipes, Larkins and my sister Lee Ann and her husband Dean joined the festivities. I will admit to being over served...

Sharon, Jack and I wandered back to the rental after 10 pm. Sharon and Jack drove back, while I enjoyed the walk.

Thursday, September 12, 2019

Andrew & Shannon's Wedding - Day 1

Up early, we loaded up the car. With all of the stuff that we are taking for the wedding, I bought some racks for the Volvo last Sunday and put on the Yakima box.

We rolled about 8:40 am. The plan for lunch was a wine and food pairing at the Goldeneye Winery in the Anderson Valley. With Jack's 21st birthday last month, this is the first time that we have taken him wine tasting.

We first stopped in the Anderson Valley with the Sanborns in January. Although it is off the beaten path, there are definitely some other stops that we would love to make in this area.

With a quick stop in Fort Bragg for some flowers, we rolled into Westport at 3:30 pm. We are spending three nights at a VRBO called Heart Song right on the ocean. I rented it right after Drew and Shannon decided on a venue.

We unpacked the car and got settled into the house. Sharon and I were both extremely pleased with the house. Set back about 75 feet over the cliffs, it has a wonderful view of the ocean.

After relaxing and enjoying the property, we headed over to Switzer Farm. This is the venue for the wedding. It is a restored 1884 Victorian farmhouse that sits atop 22 private oceanfront acres. We had a chance to visit with Drew and Shannon and the rest of the wedding party.

Eventually, we wandered back to the house and barbecued steaks for dinner. Jack and I finished the night watching Tampa Bay beat Carolina on Thursday Night Football.

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Jack is back

Jack caught a nonstop United flight from Dulles to Sacramento. Scheduled to leave about 5 pm, it was delayed about 45 minutes. He landed about 8:40 pm. I scooped him up.

With Drew and Shannon's wedding on Saturday, it is going to be a crazy couple of days.

Monday, September 09, 2019

150,850 steps

With 150,000 weekly steps for the first time in three months, I topped 140,000 steps for the fifth week in a row!

150,850 steps

Sunday, September 08, 2019

Volvo XC60 T8 - Day 304

Commute to MarysvilleAs of August 28, I had owned the Volvo for ten months. I have driven 10,813 miles. I am averaging 1,081 miles per month.

The good. I am still loving the vehicle. Typically, when I get into the car, I plug in my iPhone. Using Carplay, I will start a podcast and put my destination into Waze. During July and August, I was working in Marysville. One of the days in August, Waze routed me back to Roseville and up Highway 65 to get to there. As I got closer to Marysville, it routed me off the freeway and through Olivehurst. It turned out that I missed two major accidents: one on Highway 99 and one on Highway 70! Needless to say, I love the Carplay integration.

The bad. For the second time in ten months, the car stopped charging on the supplied cable. I took the vehicle back to the dealer. Niello Volvo blamed me for mistreating the cable. I was very grumpy that they were accusing me. I worked very hard to be particularly careful with the second cable. The cable is a AeroVironment TurboCord. Interesting, some number of these cables supplied with the 2019 Volvo XC60s were recalled due to failed capacitors. I would love to find an electrical engineer to evaluate the cable...

bad AeroVironment TurboCord?

Saturday, September 07, 2019

Sparkler Send Off

After working out in the morning, Sharon and I spent the afternoon working to get a number of things organized for next weekend's celebration.

Friday, September 06, 2019

The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel - Season One

Last Saturday night, Sharon and I finished watching season one of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel. Season One premiered on March 17, 2017, on Prime Video.

The show stars Rachel Bresnahan (Rachel in House of Cards) as Miriam "Midge" Maisel. Marin Hinkle (Judith on Two and a Half Men) and Tony Shalhoub (Wings and Monk) feature in supporting roles as her parents. Bresnahan plays a housewife in 1958 New York City who discovers she has a knack for stand-up comedy.

The series received critical acclaim and won the Golden Globe Award for Best Television Series – Musical or Comedy in 2017 and the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Comedy Series in 2018. Additionally, Bresnahan won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series in 2018 and two consecutive Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Television Series Musical or Comedy in 2018 and 2019.

Season one is very good. I recommend it. I heard a podcast talk recently about how hard it is to incorporate stand-up comedy into a movie or television series. This show nails it.

Thursday, September 05, 2019

Throwback Thursday - BIC Venturi Speakers - Spring 1976

In a somewhat bizarre sequence of events, I stumbled across this picture on the internet. Taken at Drew's Mirror Wall studios, I was stunned to see the two BIC Venturi speakers. I bought those speakers over forty years ago in the spring of 1976 during my freshman year at college.

Expressing my surprise to Drew that he still had them, he said that it was "meaningful to have them around because they were probably my first source of recorded music and they are handy bookends and speaker holders."

Tuesday, September 03, 2019

Wait Till Next Year by William Goldman and Mike Lupica

My book for August was Wait Till Next Year: The Story of a Season When What Should've Happened Didn't, and What Could've Gone Wrong Did by William Goldman and Mike Lupica. This was one of the books mentioned on The Sports Repodders Podcast in March.

William Goldman was an American novelist, playwright, and screenwriter. He first came to prominence in the 1950s as a novelist before turning to screenwriting. He won Academy Awards for his screenplays Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969) and All the President's Men (1976). His other works include his thriller novel Marathon Man and comedy/fantasy novel The Princess Bride, both of which he adapted for the film versions.

The book follows the year 1987 from the perspective of a New York Sports fan. It looks at the seasons of the Mets, Yankees, Knicks, Nets, Gaints and Jets with a little bit of Columbia University football thrown in. In 1986, the Mets had won the World Series beating the Red Sox, while the Giants had won their first Super Bowl against the Broncos in early 1987. The 1987 NFL season included a strike and the use of replacement players.

Darryl Strawberry and Dwight Gooden feature prominently in stories. Golden was suspended for drug use at the beginning of the 1987 season. I saw a depressing documentary about Strawberry and Gooden several years ago.

I was luke warm about the book while I was reading it. Sitting and thinking about the book to write this, I appreciate it more than I thought.

Monday, September 02, 2019

140,458 steps

With a late Sunday night neighborhood walk with Tiber, I topped more than 140,000 steps for the fourth straight week.

140,458 steps

Saturday, August 31, 2019

Ancil Hoffman with the Sanborns

At Ancil Hoffman Golf Course

Teeing off Friday morning at 11:16 am, Sharon and I played golf with the Sanborns at Ancil Hoffman. I struggled with the first two holes, but eventually settled down and shot a 111. Given that I am trying to more strict about counting my strokes, I feel pretty good about that score. I ended up with one par and four bogeys. My chipping is a dumpster fire. In addition to struggling on the first two holes, I lost a bushel of strokes around the greens. It took us about 4 hours and 20 minutes to play eighteen.

At the urging of Marlene over the last year, I now have a handicap. The GHIN handicap is here.

Sharon shot a 104. She had a 53 on the front nine and a 51 on the back nine. Sharon is striking the ball very constantly.

The four of us finished the day with dinner at our house. I barbecued a couple of filet mignons. Sharon made Italian flat beans and baked potatoes.

Thursday, August 29, 2019

Teenager Jenson Brooksby facing life-changing choice

Our neighbor's son qualified for the US Open last year and lost in the first round. He qualified again this year and won this first round match.

Teenager Jenson Brooksby facing life-changing choice after US Open win

Jenson Brooksby is not making this any easier on himself.

But if he keeps doing what he did Monday, the decision might just be made for him.

The 18-year-old American captured his first Grand Slam win by beating former Wimbledon finalist Tomas Berdych 6-1, 2-6, 6-4, 6-4 in the first round of the U.S. Open.

By advancing to the second round of the main draw, which he got into by winning three qualifying matches last week, Brooksby is owed $100,000. But he can only accept it if he gives up his scholarship to Baylor, where he is signed to enroll next January, and turns pro.

“It gets tougher the more I win here,” said Brooksby, who added that his decision is still “up in the air.”
Brooksby said he plans on seeing how the rest of the tournament plays out and where his world ranking stands over the next few months before making a final decision. He entered Monday at No. 394.

For now, he is just enjoying the ride.

“It’s amazing,” said Brooksby, who will face No. 17 Nikoloz Basilashvili in the second round. “[Berdych] has been a very good player, obviously, throughout the last decade and more. I’m just very excited to get through today.”

The Sacramento native met Berdych on Court 13, and by the end of the match, it was standing room only at least three rows deep, with fans standing on bleachers from Court 14 to get a peek at the upset. The crowd roared as Brooksby’s final forehand zoomed past the 33-
year-old Berdych to end the match.

“I think the fans like me a lot, which I’m very appreciative for,” Brooksby said. “I love their support.”

Later in the day, the crowd swelled around a different backcourt as another American teenager tried to pull off a win of his own. Zachary Svajda — who, at 16 years old earned a wild card after winning the USTA Boys under-18 national championship — took the first two sets before falling to 37-year-old Italian Paolo Lorenzi 3-6, 6-7, 6-4, 7-6, 6-2. Svajda appeared to be battling leg cramps as the marathon match, lasting 4:20, wore on.

Brooksby, meanwhile, had just finished signing every last autograph by the time the next match on his court began. He then walked through the concourse mostly unrecognized, save for a few fans who stopped him to take a photo. If he gets through another round, the blond-haired kid who wears a broken-shell necklace may not be so anonymous, especially with fans craving to find the next big American tennis player.

“I know that I’m American and they want Americans to do well,” Brooksby said. “I appreciate that they want me to do well.”

Brooksby was here last year, too, as a wild card after winning the USTA Boys’ 18s national championship. He lost to John Millman in straight sets, but came back to Flushing a year later feeling better prepared against Berdych, the former world No. 4 who has battled injuries this year.

“I wasn’t really ready for that stage yet last year because I hadn’t played even [ATP] challengers for the most part,” Brooksby said.

“Now I’ve played more challengers and bigger tournaments, so I’m more ready for this stage this year.”

Whether he remains on the big stage or opts for college remains to be seen. Brian Boland, the men’s coach at Baylor, was in attendance Monday to see Brooksby take down Berdych. Another win would give Brooksby the option of earning $163,000 — or slightly less than four years of tuition at Baylor.

“It’s definitely [a] financial [decision],” Brooksby said. “I would get four years of free college if I went just for one semester, compared with the money I earn here. Just gotta figure all that out.”

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Jack's 2019 Fall Semester Classes

Today is the first day of classes for Jack's senior year at Georgetown. His classes include:

TRT 270 - Adv International Business
This course analyzes the international business environment (IBE), defined as the economic, political, and social factors that shape firms’ global strategies. We seek to explain the ways in which—and the reasons why—countries differ in macroeconomic and regulatory policies relevant to the firm. The course places special emphasis on the political economy of the IBE, which means that we study how international and domestic political forces influence continuity and change in the rules governing international economic

OPIM 274 - Business Forecasting
This course builds upon the regression models studied in OPIM 173 and related introductory courses in statistics. The aim is to further develop statistical modeling skills for business applications, with particular emphasis upon time series, which form the inputs for sales forecasting and production planning as well as much financial and economic activity. The reason for examining time series is to enable us to make forecasts and to ascribe to those forecasts an adequate measure of the uncertainty surrounding the forecasts.

  • Why do we forecast? The reason that businesses forecast is to aid the process of planning.
  • Why plan? Planning enables you to modify your actions in response to potential challenges and opportunities. If a forecast does not have the potential to change your actions, it is useless. If you do not respond to change your business probably will not survive very long.

If we accept the premise that forecasting is vital to a business, how should we carry out the task? We must first recognize that there is no such thing as a universal best method, but rather we need to develop an arsenal of different approaches and to recognize when each approach is appropriate.

The choice of forecasting method depends upon:

  • The objectives of the exercise [e.g. short-term production planning, investment planning, medium-term budgetary planning, long-term strategic planning]
  • The importance of the task in hand [financial impact per item forecast, # of items]
  • The extent to which other variables can affect the outcome, and whether or not those factors are under our control [e.g. YES: own production; NO: GDP, weather]
  • The quantity and quality of data available, and when those observations become available [e.g. macroeconomic variables, new movies]
  • The number of forecasts required [e.g. 10,000 product lines; US unemployment]

The course will focus primarily upon quantitative methods for forecasting, ranging from purely extrapolative approaches to causal modeling, but with some coverage of judgmental methods.

Model building and forecasting are not passive activities. Students will be expected to bring their laptops to class and to work on different forecasting assignments both in class and in team-based projects.

ARTH 255 - Global Contemporary Art
This survey course provides a general introduction to global contemporary art. After providing a brief grounding in 20th-century modernism and socio-political events of recent decades, this course considers a broad thematic range: pop and conceptual art; the emergence of performance, installation, and new media; earth works and site specificity; identity-based and institution-critical art; relational aesthetics and new modes of spectacle and digital consumerism; and the emergence of the global biennial and gallery system. This course assumes no prior knowledge and introduces students to a constellation of artists from around the world—from Cindy Sherman to Andy Warhol and Ai Weiwei, Lygia Clark to Kara Walker and Walid Raad, and many more.

ARTH 431 - Museum Architecture
Museum architecture shapes visitors’ art experience and plays an integral role in the life of a city or region. In this course students will think critically about the architecture of the art museum. Questions to be considered include: How does architecture contribute to a museum’s visiting culture? What is architecture’s appropriate role – should buildings be at the forefront of a museum experience or remain as a backdrop? What challenges arise when designing buildings for contemporary art? How have signature buildings impacted an area’s economic standing? The work of designers such as Renzo Piano, Tadao Ando, Zaha Hadid and Snøhetta will be explored. Case studies addressing institutions such as the Metropolitan Museum, the Art Institute of Chicago and the Louvre will also be analyzed. Students will gain familiarity with field scholarship, visit multiple area museums and complete writing and presentation assignments.

2019 Spring Semester
2018 Fall Semester
2018 Spring Semester
2017 Fall Semester

Monday, August 26, 2019

141,079 steps

For the third week in a row, I had more than 140,000 steps. The week included four treadmill runs, two Peloton One spin classes and a Saturday morning run around Ancil Hoffman Park.

141,079 steps

Sunday, August 25, 2019

Jack back to school

Finishing up two weeks at home, Sharon and I took Jack to the airport at 8:15 pm on Sunday night. He caught a 10:20 pm United redeye flight nonstop from Sacramento to Dulles. He was on the ground in DC at 6:10 am on Monday morning.

Jack caught an Uber at 6:40 am and was back at his apartment by 7:10 am. He will be back in less than two and a half weeks for Drew's wedding.

It is very difficult for me to believe that he is starting his senior year at Georgetown!

Saturday, August 24, 2019

Cornflake Chicken plus an Early Birthday Celebration

Lydia and SharonCelebrating Jack's birthday
Early Saturday afternoon, Tom, Kevin, Leah, Lydia and Amelia came over. Sharon wanted to teach Leah and Kevin how to make her mother's cornflake chicken and scalloped potatoes recipes.

Tom is just back from a cruise along the Croatia coast. The company was Eon Tours. The yacht that they were on was the Kadena.

After putting together the dinner, the group spent some time at the pool. Only Lydia, Sharon and I actually got in the water...

After dinner, we had an early celebration for Jack's birthday. He turns 21 on Friday, but is heading back to school tomorrow. Sharon made a nice yellow cake with chocolate frosting.

Friday, August 23, 2019

Taiko Sushi

Sharon, Jack and I finished the week having dinner at Taiko Sushi in Miagro Centre. Sharon had eaten there earlier in August.

We sat the bar and had a couple of rolls. We had some nice personal service. We will definitely go back.

Two random footnotes. First, earlier in the day, after doing some shopping at the mall, Jack and Sharon stopped and visited me at work. They took a short tour of the new building. Second, Serritella's is moving into the Milagro Centre.

Monday, August 19, 2019

145,505 steps

For the second week in a row, I had more than 140,000 steps. The week included three treadmill runs, three Peloton One spin classes and two days trekking back and forth across Disneyland and California Adventure.

145,505 steps

Sunday, August 18, 2019

2019 Disneyland - Day 3

Up before 7 am, we packed up the room. We caught an Uber to Orange County Airport and had breakfast at Ducks Breakaway [breakfast burritos].

We caught a 10:40 am Southwest flight from Orange County to Sacramento. I ended up upgrading Sharon's ticket to A4. As a result, we were able to get the nice exit row on the right side of the plane.

We were back in Sacramento just after noon. The luggage came fairly quickly and we were home before 1:15 pm.

My original plan was to head to Marysville for a go-live event at one of our hospitals. After talking to my boss and the teams, they felt that things were quiet enough that it didn't make sense for me to drive there. I attended the 3 pm and 4:30 pm conference calls instead.

Four observations about Disneyland. First, Jack was somewhat unenthusiastic about the new Smugglers Run ride. His point is that his generation is used to a much more interactive experience. If you are a gunner or engineer on the ride, your role is reduced to just pushing buttons. As a gunner, you don't aim; you just push a button. Sharon and I ended up as the pilots both times we rode the ride (a 11% probability...). I found riding in the front as a pilot fairly immersive.

Second, our consensus best ride was Cars. Disney has done a very nice job with this ride. Although there is only one ride and we didn't get into the cantina, I was very impressed with the new Star Wars Galaxy End section of the park. They have done an amazing job creating an overall experience.

Third, I probably pushed us too hard to ride as many rides as possible. We did a great job using the Disney app and the Max Pass to get Fast Passes. We could have wandered the corners of the parks and downtown Disney more. Sharon and I need to go back for two days and take it at a slower pace.

Fourth, I am still very confused about the Magic Morning opportunity. As a hotel guest, you are able to get into the park an hour early. When we went to Disneyland on Saturday morning early, we found a huge group massed at the end of Main Street waiting for majority of the park to open. When the park finally officially opened, there was a stampede for the new Star Wars ride.

Saturday, August 17, 2019

2019 Disneyland - Day 2

2019 Disneyland - Day 2I set the alarm for 6:40 am. We had hoped to be able to make a reservation for the Star Wars Cantina at 7 am, but this went awry. Apparently, you need to make reservations two weeks ahead of time...

We were up moving towards Disneyland by 7:40 am and into the park by 7:50 am. Although we could get into the park early because we were staying in one of the Disney hotels, it seems like most of the park was closed.

At 8 am, there was a stampede towards the new Star Wars ride.  The day ended up including:
  • Thunder Mountain;
  • walked to Galaxy Edge part of the park, only decided the line for Smugglers Run was way too long;
  • breakfast at the Mint Julep Bar {coffee, hot chocolate and beignets);
  • Hyperspace Mountain;
  • Buzz Lightyear Astro Blaster;
  • Peter Pan;
  • Cars;
  • an adult beverage from Bayside Brews;
  • Soarin’ Over California;
  • lunch at the Wine Country Trattoria [Sharon and I: Tuscan salad with shrimp; Jack: Fettuccine Shrimp Alfredo];
  • Star Tours;
  • Davy Crockett Canoes;
  • Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run;
  • Jungle cruise;
  • Mr Todd's Wild Ride;
  • an adult beverage from Sonoma Terrace to take in the line for Guardians of the Galaxy (the app said that the line was 55 minutes, but by the time we got there it was 90 minutes so we bailed);
  • Grizzly Peak (Jack and I);
  • Jack and I walked around the Midway at California Adventure;
  • dinner at Catal in Downtown Disney [Sharon: Suckling Pig with Braised Tuscan Kale, Jicama and Grilled Pineapple Salad, Cilantro, Mole Poblano; Jack: Suckling Pig Paella with Chorizo de Bilbao, Shishito, Poblano Chile, Tomatillo, Cilantro, Bomba Rice; me: Traditional Paella with Mussels, Shrimp, Clams, Roasted Chicken, Chorizo de Bilbao, Saffron Bomba Rice, and Peas]
  • Hyperspace Mountain;
  • Small World; and,
  • Splash Mountain (Sharon and Jack).

By the time, we got back to the room it was almost midnight. We all crashed.

Friday, August 16, 2019

2019 Disneyland - Day 1

2019 Disneyland - Day 1

Leaving the house at 7 am, Sharon, Jack and I caught a 9:10 am Southwest flight from Sacramento to Orange County. Collecting our luggage, we caught an Uber to the Grand Californian Hotel at Disneyland. We are spending the next two night there. Getting to the hotel before 11:30 am, we got a nice surprise: the room was ready.

After getting settled into the room, we headed to Disneyland. We were in the park before noon. The rest of the day included:
  • Lunch at Rancho del Zocalo Restaurante in the park [Sharon: tostada salad; Jack: nachos; me: enchiladas];
  • Thunder Mountain;
  • Pirates of the Caribbean;
  • Indiana Jones;
  • Millennium Falcon: Smugglers Run;
  • Star Tours;
  • Cars;
  • Grizzly Peak (Jack and I made an aborted attempt: the ride broke down, we got off and ended up with a Fast Pass that we didn't use.);
  • an adult beverage in the Hearthstone Lounge in the Grand Californian;
  • Dinner at John Brennan's Jazz Kitchen in Downtown Disney [Sharon: shrimp and grits; Jack: bourbon burger; me: jambalaya];
  • Hyperspace Mountain (Jack and I);
  • Indiana Jones (Jack and I);
  • Matterhorn (Sharon rode once as a single before we got there); and,
  • Splash Mountain.

By the time that we got back to the room, it was about 11:45 pm. It was a long day. I have a number of observations about the parks and the rides that I will in the post for Sunday when we are winding our way back home...

Thursday, August 15, 2019

Throwback Thursday - Drew and Morgan - September 1990

Wallen took this picture of Drew and Morgan at East View in September of 1990. Tomasin, Julie, David, Wallen, Drew and I were on our way to a wedding in Mammoth Lakes.

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Once upon a Time in Hollywood

Tuesday night, Sharon and Jack went to see Once upon a Time in Hollywood at the Country Club Cinema. Sharon and I saw it about two weeks ago. She noted that having listened to a couple of podcasts about the movie the first hour didn't seem to drag as much as it did the first time; she noticed a number of little things that she missed the first time.

Monday, August 12, 2019

140,393 Steps

Sunday, August 11, 2019

The Saga Continues...

After a long running battle with the banks and the courts, our neighbor was finally evicted in July. Last weekend, he came back to collect some of his stuff.

This weekend, a crew came to clean out the house. Walking Tiber, I stopped to talk to one of the guys. He said that the house got them by surprise; there was more stuff to clean out then he expected. They ended up hauling away more than three large trailer loads!

The Saga Continues...

Saturday, August 10, 2019

Jack is back!

Jack is back!

Jack caught a 5:20 pm United Flight nonstop from Dulles to Sacramento. He was on the ground in Sacramento just before 8 pm. Sharon and I picked him up. On the way home, Jack ordered a Dominos Pizza from the new store on the corner of Palm and Fair Oaks.

He will be home for just over two weeks before he heads back to start his senior year at Georgetown. The next two months are going to be wild...

Friday, August 09, 2019

Canon East Again...

Janie, Sharon and I finished the week having dinner at Canon East. This is the fourth time this year that Sharon has eaten dinner here [May, February and January].

After drinks on the patio, we split Kusshi Oysters, Prawn Stuffed Squash Blossoms, summer peaches, an heirloom tomato salad and seared ahi tuna. We had a poached peach for dessert.

Thursday, August 08, 2019

At Ancil Hoffman

After work, Sharon and I headed to Ancil Hoffman Golf Course. We had a 6:20 pm tee time.

We had the course pretty much to ourselves. There was a husband and wife twosome in front of us, but nobody behind us. It took us about an hour and 45 minutes to play nine holes.

Playing the front nine, we both carded a 57. Sharon continues to strike the ball very well.

Although I moved the ball a bit at times to improve the lay, my score was less liberal then usual. I have been trying to be more honest lately about counting all of the strokes.

It was a very nice evening. I enjoyed playing a lot...

Wednesday, August 07, 2019

Big Littles Lies - Season Two

Saturday night, Sharon and I watched the last two episodes of season two of Big Little Lies. The series is based on the novel of the same name by Liane Moriarty. We finished watching season one in late June. Season two premiered on HBO on June 9, 2019.

Big Little Lies stars Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman, Shailene Woodley, Laura Dern, and Zoë Kravitz. Alexander Skarsgård, Adam Scott, James Tupper, and Jeffrey Nordling feature in supporting roles. Meryl Streep joined the main cast for the second season.

Season two picks up where season one left off. It explores the repercussions of the death at the end of season one to the Monterey Five. The plot includes a couple of twists that I didn't see coming.

I enjoyed season two; I recommend it. Meryl Streep's performance is particularly amazing. I am sure that she will probably win an Emmy...

Tuesday, August 06, 2019 Fredette’s NBA dreams started and ended in Sac

I never thought that Jimmer would be an NBA player... Fredette was drafted 11th in 2011. It is particularly discouraging to look at who was drafted after him in the same draft: Klay Thompson was drafted 12th; Kawhi Leonard was selected15th, and; Jimmy Butler was taken 30th. Fredette’s NBA dreams started and ended in Sac: ‘No one is more frustrated than Jimmer’ - July 10, 2019

Jimmer Fredette’s NBA hopes and dreams started here eight years ago amid much promise and hype.

And they ended in Sacramento last week, in the Warriors’ locker room in Golden 1 Center, in a city that once embraced him and then wondered whatever happened to Jimmermania.

Fredette was a sure thing who suddenly wasn’t for this fact alone: His prodigious skill set that played out at BYU – a dizzying amount of big shots and 30-point games – did not translate to the NBA.

He was effortless at work in college, but in the NBA, Fredette had to work for everything. This included getting his shot off against defenders longer and quicker. And this nagging question: Was he a point guard or shooting guard?

At 30, Fredette’s work ethic never changed, though his team colors and employers often did. He remained a good teammate, hard working, eager to improve. But you cannot teach quickness and defense, and the NBA affords little opportunity and time for development for journeyman veterans.

When Fredette signed with Golden State’s summer league program in June, he beamed when meeting with the media. His last hurrah in the NBA was a chance to show he belonged.

Fredette said days before the Kings hosted the California Classic, “I believe I’m an NBA player. I believe I can do really great things and be able to help a team in some way. I wanted to give that one more opportunity and be with my family and be able to live here (in the United States). We’ll see what happens.”

What happened was a sobering dose of hoops reality with a reroute back overseas to continue his career. Fredette this week signed with Greek team Panathinaikos of the EuroLeague on a two-year deal.

Fredettte was just a face in the crowd, another roster number in the mix of the four teams at the California Classic, each player eager to catch the right eye. Fredette understood that he had to excel against players much younger and a great deal less heralded.

Fredette averaged 9.5 points on 44 percent shooting in just over 20 minutes of action in two games. He also earned the first technical foul of his American playing career.

I caught up to Fredette in the labyrinth of hallways by the Golden 1 locker rooms, moments after he informed his coaches he was leaving the team, signaling the end of his NBA career. He has since returned to his family home in Denver, with wife Whitney and two young children.

“I’m good,” he said. He was good in appearance, the sure smile and firm hand shake, but inside, Fredette was unsettled. He was informed by coaches that he likely would not have made the Warriors final roster, so he elected to alter course.

Fielding offers from pro teams across the globe, Fredette elected to step aside and not risk injury. This wasn’t quitting as much as it was an effort to find a better fit while allowing someone else his game minutes while the Warriors competed in the Las Vegas Summer League.

It was his final NBA assist.

“I wish him well,” Warriors summer league coach Aaron Miles said. “I wasn’t sure exactly what was going on with him. But I definitely know he has a lot of basketball left in him.”

The coach added, “He still can play. I think he should still play. I should say this – I think he should do whatever he feels is best for him and his family. I know a lot of times as you get older, sometimes it’s more mental than physical. But I don’t know his situation. I don’t know what the reasoning behind it. But he definitely has a lot of basketball left.”

Fredette had Kings fans in 2011 as excited as any rookie in franchise history. He was the No. 10 pick in the draft, by Milwaukee, and quickly acquired by the Kings. His jersey No. 7 was a hot seller.

Kings merchandise sales spiked some 500 percent over a one-year span with three-quarters of the increase tied to Fredette, according to national consumer reports in 2011. Sacramento merchandise outlets regularly sold out of No. 7 garb during his first months with the club.

The Maloofs, who owned the Kings then, were certain they had their next star. But Fredette never again found his basketball groove on American soil.

He bounced from the Kings to the Bulls, Pelicans and Knicks, then had a stint with the NBA’s G-League in New York. He found his game in China over three seasons with the Shanghai Sharks, averaging more than 37 points a game, including 75 in one. He averaged 6.0 points a game in 241 career NBA tilts, including a brief stint late last season when he was signed by Phoenix.

Fredette has long maintained that his family, including parents in New York, his immediate family and his Mormon faith have kept things in proper perspective. Basketball is a game, not real life. But he also uses basketball to make a living.

“He’s still the same guy, hasn’t changed and still wants to compete,” said Greg St. Jean, the former Kings assistant player development coach who got to know Fredette well. They remain in contact and spoke often throughout the California Classic.

“No one is more frustrated than Jimmer,” St. Jean added. “He’ll find his place somewhere. I think if he was coming out of BYU now, he’d still be a high draft pick.”

Fredette was known as “The Lonely Master” during his China stay, which he said was a “double meaning.”

“Lonely in Chinese is ‘Jimmo,’ but it sounds like Jimmer,” Fredette said after first signing with the Warriors. “So to say my name means lonely. It means you’re on the top of the mountain and no one can reach your level.”

Family, faith and hoops still define Fredette, said someone who knows the man as well as anyone.

“I’m so proud of Jimmer on and off the court,” Fredette’s mother, Kay, said from upstate New York. “He was a joy to raise because he seemed to just want to mind his own business, play sports, support his family and friends and live life as a good person who was kind to everyone.

“He is still the same even after all the accolades and attention. He works so hard, every day, trying to get better (in basketball). It’s not easy to do what he does. That’s the life he has chosen for himself and his family.”

She added, “He’s the same. I watched him at some basketball camps we had in Utah (recently) and he took the time to acknowledge every single last fan in the gym. That’s why they love him. He knows he’s not any better than anyone else.

“He’s just a kid, now a young man, who happened to hit in big in basketball. That’s it. He knows what life is really all about.”

Fredette’s career has no global boundaries, and good money can be made in the EuroLeague, where Fredette will reportedly be among the highest paid players. There’s always a market somewhere on the globe for players who can score and entertain.

“There’s been a lot of ups and downs throughout my whole career,” Fredette said. “Through the whole thing, you have to stay even keel and push forward. I had a lot of great opportunities in my life to go to a lot of cool places in basketball, be successful and make great money and be able to play the game that I love. It’s been a true blessing for me.”

Monday, August 05, 2019


Starting the Monday, July 8 after we got back from the east coast, I spent 18 of 24 days in Marysville working to get a project back on track that had been driven into a corn field. I have used this analogy before...

Starting last October, it has been an interesting stretch professionally. This ten month period has included: the Camp Fire; a major production problem with the isilon; the data center move; settling 1,300 employees into a new building, and; now the Rideout project.

Sunday, August 04, 2019

Sunday Morning Bike Ride

Sunday Bike RideSunday morning, Sharon and I took a leisurely bike ride around Carmichael. We covered just over nine miles in an hour and thirteen minutes.

We rode to Jensen Botanical Garden. We have driven by this park on Fair Oaks for years, but never stopped. We rode into the back part of the park off of Sutter Street. The back of the park includes the Carmichael Community Garden and an old olive orchard. We need to come back and explore the property without bikes.

From there we headed back towards the house and into Ancil Hoffman Park. We rode along the east side of the golf course to about the seventeen tee. Heading out of the park, we headed home via California to Palm.

Saturday, August 03, 2019

Good Riddance

Good Riddance
We had continuous struggles over the last three years with the neighbor at the end our cul-de-sac. He got evicted from the house in the mid of July.

We had heard some noise over the last couple of weeks that he was trying to buy the house back from the bank. Thankfully, it appears that this isn't going to happen.

The bank allowed him to come back today and collect his belongings. Talking to the bank's realtor, this was more than a little bit of a circus. In spite of the fact that he had lost title to the property more than six months ago and the bank has been working to evict him, he never packed up anything!?! He and his family were trying to pack up and load out a 4,300 sq ft house full of possessions in a couple of hours.

The house needs a lot work. It will be interesting to see what happens next.