Saturday, December 27, 2008

So this is how it feels...

Christmas was great. I flew out to Baltimore, met up with my folks, and drove up to Tuckerton NJ and my brothers house. It was great to see them, and my nephew is a giant chatterbox, repeating everything he hears. On Christmas Day, Tami used her last companion pass to give my parents a surprise visit. (pics will come as soon as my dad sends them)

And thats where my story begins.

It was a breeze for her to fly out xmas day, but I knew it would be tough for her to get back. But with all day saturday and sunday, surely she could get on one flight...

So this morning My dad, Tami and I all got up early and drove the 1.5 hours to Philly. We got there really early so Tami would have a shot at getting on the nonstop.

Unsuccessful at getting on the nonstop, our next shot was getting her to chicago, where she would at least have a place to stay and have more options out to Denver.
This is where we realized how hard it can be to get stuck somewhere. The problem is not that you can't get on a flight, its that THERES NOONE TO TALK TO. And really its nobody's fault. The CSA's are doing everything they can, theres just so many people. Every gate had a line 10 deep, and it wasn't moving quickly. And then you just don't know which flight to try to get on!!

Ughh...since I had to work that afternoon in chicago, I ditched Tami and left her to fend for herself. When I landed in Chicago I was glad to find out that she was right behind me, on the very next flight.

Now here we were, with the rest of the day and all the next day in Chicago to get her back to Denver. We immediately ran to the next Den flight and asked the CSA if she could get on the standby list. She looked at us, and bluntly told us that non-rev's (non revenue passengers) wouldn't even have a chance until Wednesday.

Oops. See what happened is that friday night both chicago airports shut down due to fog, cancelling tons of flights and leaving tons of people stranded. Not good when you have nowhere to put them. We had anticipated full flights, but we had not anticipated a HUGE backlog of revenue standby's.

There was no way she was getting out.

A few tears and $300 later, Tami had a flight booked out of O'hare on United back to Denver..ON MONDAY. Yikes.

It all turned out to be a blessing in disguise since Tami's mom lives there. (An hour away) I spoke to her on the phone very briefly and it was then that I knew we had made the right decision. She haden't seen her daughter since May, and she was ecstatic to see her. I talked to Tami just a few hours ago and she sounded completely happy! We just have to suck up to her boss so he won't be too upset that she'll miss a day of work on Monday. ;)

-JJ

Friday, December 19, 2008

Midnight Visitors

I recently read a blog about the top reasons to love colorado. here is #12

12. A fresh layer of snow on my backyard never lasts for more than a few hours before a maze of fox tracks is imprinted on it.

How true it is.

It aint a fox, (Deer, POSSIBLY but DOUBTFULLY elk, maybe one of you wildlife trackers can figure it out) but Kelsie says that while I'm gone there are more every morning. They aren't small either. Weird thing is we never see them during the day. They just leave traces of their presence.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

The Missing Reindeer, and I miss Baseball

Last night I was sitting around with Kristy and James watching the tail end of the Polar Express, when I noticed a glaring omission. Santa was circling the skies and there was no red nosed reindeer guiding the way. It was at that moment I realized that in most of these Christmas movies Rudolph is pretty much missing in all of them! I looked at Kristy and James and said "WHAT GIVES??"

After my question was validated, I did some research online and found out that the very idea of Rudolph is still a private entity. It has not yet entered into "public domain", therefore his name can't be thrown around like...say...SANTA CLAUS. How unfortunate.

Not many of you know Kristy and James. I recently moved into a new crashpad! Which is great, because its not really a crashpad at all. Both flight attendants, Kristy and James have been dating for 15 months and living together for probably 13 of those. (Not saying I approve) We've become good friends in the past year or so, and they invited me to come stay with them when I'm in town for $50 cheaper than my last place. Add to that the fact that Kristy loves to cook for me, for which she REFUSES reimbursement, its not a bad deal at all!

So anyway, as of Thursday, the Saints are officially out of the playoffs, LSU is playing in a second tier bowl that they will probably lose (they really don't deserve to be there), Colorado narrowly missed being bowl eligible, and we're stuck watching crappy teams for 3 weeks until we get to see Florida manhandle Oklahoma. So basically we're stuck with the NBA until springtime. ech. I'm glad I enjoy the snow.

And SPEAKING of Florida, with Tebow missing out on the heisman, get this: When Florida beats OU, we're going to have a heisman trophy winner that has lost to BOTH the other guys who were up for the award. Hilarious, for I think the Heisman is a JOKE. YES, A JOKE.

I'm sorry, but I'm gonna rant on ONE MORE THING. JUST ONE. The CUBS. And for that matter, the YANKEES too. But mostly the Cubs.
Up until yesterday, the Cubs were in seriously contention to sign perennial All-Star Jake Peavy. Probably to a huge 100 million-ish deal. Ok, not surprising. Until you realize who owns the Cubs: The Chicago Tribune. What did the Tribune do back in April and again earlier this month??? LAID OFF A SIZABLE PORTION OF THEIR NEWSROOM STAFF. Nice. And in this swell economy the Yankees are spending like its 1999. Plus the fact they just built a new stadium and made the public pay for it. These people need to get their priorities straight.

Thats all. Sorry for the very wordy and no fun pictures blog. ACTUALLY, I can show you pictures of my parents house...IN NEW ORLEANS!




Enjoy the cold.
-JJ

Monday, December 08, 2008

My Little Buffalo!


I'm proud to announce that Tami just got herself a job at the University of Colorado! She'll be working in family housing, which is precisely what shes wanted to do. Long story short, this is probably a month or 2 in the making, as it started out with over 350 candidates and in the end Tami was #1! (This is more or less accurate? As others who tested above her, there were only 7, either got weeded out or were placed in other jobs. Tami correct me if I'm wrong.)

So much else to say! We just got back the other day from plucking our own Christmas tree out of the woods. It's not perfect, in fact I refer to it as our special tree, but it looks great in our front window.

Yes we have 2 trees. One is fake. And unfortunately at publishing time the lights would light on the fake one.

And the evening before that, Tami and I joined the Southwest employees here in DEN for the Parade of Lights! Tami blogged about that one, so I'll leave that to her.

And yesterday we were seeing friends in Colorado Springs, and went for a jaunt around Garden of the Gods, where I haven't been in 6 years. And in the process got some nice photos of each other:


Anyways, thats all for now! Enjoy.

-JJ

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Airline Industry Poem

Sorry I've been...away. Had a good thanksgiving, and I've uploaded a nice picture from that.

I also have a great poem tailored to the airline industry. So enjoy!



Last night as I lay sleeping
I died .. or so it seemed,
Then I went to heaven
But only in my dream

Up there St Peter met me
Standing at the pearly gates,
He said, 'I must check your record...
Please stand here and wait.'

He turned and said 'Your record
Is covered with terrible flaws,
On earth I see you rallied
For every losing cause.'

I see that you drank alcohol
And smoked and partied too,
Fact is, you've done everything
A good person should never do.

We can't have people like you up here...
Your life was full of sin,
Then he read the last of my record
Took my hand and said, 'Come in.'

He led me up to the Chief of Heaven ....
'Take him in and treat him well',
He used to work in the Airline Industry ...
He's done his time in hell.'

-Anonymous

Friday, November 14, 2008

A Sham.

Does anyone else find the new Bud Light Ads touting "Drinkability" as completely ludicrous? It's not even a word for cryin' out loud! I, for one, find that this is just them ADMITTING that its no different than any other cheap american beer.

THIS, my friends, is amazing.



Sorry, I have to post this too. It's just too much.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Back Online!

Hooray! My computer is back, with a brand new 160 G Hard Drive, successfully installed by...ME. Anyways.

So here are some pictures. Enjoy. I have nothing else to say.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Just a thought

Here on this blog, I'm not really afraid to share an opinion or just an idea. Sometimes they border on the extreme, but sometimes its just a thought process. So don't freak out.

Heres another one. I got this book at the library called "The Seige of Mecca." It also describes the birth of Al Queda. I'm not even halfway through the book, and just yesterday this is what occured to me:

Al Queda was basically formed by a group of extreme conservative Islamics. Morman Fundamentalists, led by the likes of Warren Jeffs, is the extreme conservative sect of Mormanism. (Thanks "Under the Banner of Heaven")

So heres my question: What makes extreme conservative Christians any different? Are they immune to the same ill feelings and hate toward their fellow man?

Once again, just a thought.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Yup

Hi fellas. My computer is still broken. Well its not broken, but it is sans hard drive. I got my new one in the mail, but it was the wrong one.

Anyways, in news, I just got back from my 5 year reunion. I know. What other college has a 5 year reunion? haha. It was fun.

Also the leaves around Golden have been amazing. I went and took some pics. Here they are. I added them to a preexisting album, so the first have you may have seen before.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Can't Trust Either of Them

Ok, why would I vote for someone who consistently lies to me? Just the fact that there is a website called factchecker.com, used to help us find out how much these candidates are lying to us in their campaign ads, pretty much says it all. And its BOTH of them. They lie to us now, they will lie to us later.

AND THEN Mccain STILL tries to fool us with this ruse (Obama has voted to raise taxes 94% of the time, which has been proven to be a lie) at the debate tonight. UNBELIEVABLE.


On anonther note, I accidentily set my Macbook in a small puddle of coffee, and now the hard drive is fried. Its ok, most of my stuff is backed up and my new one is in the mail. (2x larger and $100 cheaper than having apple do it.)

Thursday, October 02, 2008

VP Debate Thoughts

It's only halfway through (and frankly I'm having trouble not flipping to the dodgers cubs or oregon st utah, but here are some of my thoughts:

taxes: I don't care. tax me if you have to. The problem here is honestly. Are my taxes going towards what you say, or to golden toilet seats?

same sex social rights: A non issue. It's about human rights, not gay rights.

Foreign Policy: How do we insist on other countries not having nuclear warheads, when we refuse to get rid of our own? This will forever be a stalemate. God help us.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Playin some ball with a Hall of Famer

Not too long ago I entered a contest here at work: Write an essay about a time you "hit one out of the park" (i.e. did something great for a customer) and win a trip to play baseball with Nolan Ryan.

Well I did not win, but my friend Kevin did. (For the 2nd time), and invited me to come along as his guest.

So needless to say, the weekend was PHENOMENAL. Much better than I ever could have expected. 10 employees and their guests flew into Albany, NY along with 10 customers and their guests. It was fun to meet folks from around the country with same interests as you. Here were some highlights from the weekend:

-Filet Minon dinner on the first night

-Playing softball on a recreational soccer field because Doubleday field was flooded. It was awesome to see Nolan helping move benches and setting down bases to help set up the field. He was really into the game and his wife was the backup catcher. It had such a pickup-game feel and was a very intimate setting that many of us think it was better than playing on Doubleday Field. Nolan was quoted saying that he'll keep doing this weekend every year as long as Southwest wants him to. BTW, as a guest I did not play, which I was really ok with.

Nolan helping move benches, as his wife looks on.

First Batter of the Game

-Dinner in the Hall of Fame, surrounded by plaques of inductees, with Nolan having a beer at the neighboring table, just hanging out, one of the guys. I can't explain how cool the experience was.

Dinner in the Hall. Yup, Nolan is in there somewhere.

Q&A Session after dinner

-Watching the carved out 1,000 lb pumkins, manned by rowers, raced on the lake.

Some Pumpkins Floated well.

Some did not

-3 hours at the Hall of Fame.

Make sure you read that story. Click on the picture to enlarge

Every Championship Ring

This was definitely a once in a lifetime experience. I have every intention of winning it next year.

Here are some other worthy pictures:

Me bringing one back into Doubleday Field

I think this quote from a former Mets manager is pretty accurate in the present.

Go here for the remainder of the pictures from the weekend.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Widow Sighting

Tami and I just got back from an early morning hike to see the aspens turning colors. (see those pictures here) When we arrived back home, I stepped into my bathroom to make sure there was a towel for her to take a shower, when I noticed a spider in the sink.

It was large and looked like it was ready to pounce on me. I soon recognized some distinctive marks on it that identified it as one of the worlds most dangerous spiders: The Black Widow. After smashing it with a shoe, I ran for the internet and my recognition was correct.

Now bears the question, what should I do? Coors is coming over to inspect the house in a couple weeks, where we will definitely mention it. But should I say something sooner? Is this not that big of a deal, just a spider who happened to wander into our house?

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Crazy Work Story!

Yesterday I was supposed to be done in chicago by 3. Unfortunatey I'm on reserve so scheduling decided I needed to be rerouted down to Oklahoma City via Kansas City. No big deal, right? Well we get down to Kansas City and its raining cats and dogs. This really isn't a big deal either, but problem is we had no pilots. They were on their way, running late, from St Louis. When they finally get there, we load up and leave.

Well we end up sitting on the runway for 15 mins or so, when the pilots call us and tell us that the control tower had shut down so we can't go anywhere until that gets back up and running. About 30 mins later we get the call, and we take off headed down to OKC.

Well later that evening at the OKC hotel, I got hungry so I headed down to the restaurant. As I'm sitting there watching the Kansas-South Florida game, I overhear a guy next to me talking on the phone about being stuck on the runway with tornadoes on the field. When he got off the phone, I asked him "You were in Kansas City today?"

"Yeah"

"You a Pilot?"

"Yeah"

For who?

"Southwest"

"I think I was your flight attendant today."

We both laughed, and explained I just didn't get to say hi to him since we were in such a hurry. Then he proceeded to tell me that they had talked to the control tower, and they said "hey guys theres a tornado 1 mile south of the field, so we're evacuating. We'll see you in 30." And just left us stranded on the end of the runway, in an AIRPLANE. uh oh. haha. So they had a decision to make, either stay put or head back to the terminal. Ultimately they decided that the terminal was a quarter mile CLOSER to the tornado than we were, so they decided to stay put.

They just had been wise enough not to drop the "T" word to the passengers, or to us for that matter, for fear of scaring everybody.

-JJ

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Giants Game

These are from a few weeks ago. I finally got back home to my card reader to take the pictures off my camera. Nice stadium. I was extra tired the next day, as I didn't get back to the hotel until 11:30 and I had to be up at 5am. I paid for that for a few days, but it was worth it. I sat out by the bay.

Sorry these pics came out a little dark.




Thursday, September 04, 2008

What I Believe...A Political Blog

This is probably something you've never heard from me. And since I'm new to all this, forgive me if I sound naive or some of my facts are skewed. I try.

-Politicians act like children in a "yo mama" fight. Can't I decide on the issues instead of because one candidate bashed the other one and the other one didn't have a comeback?

-Our country was founded on democracy, and it works here, but that in no way means it works everywhere. In the history of the world there have been a plethora of types of governments that have succeeded and we think ours is best??? Are we THAT smug? Is the US the Ohio State of the world???

-Experience is often overrated:
George Washington was a seasoned War General, but had very little "political experience." At least none that I could dig up, seems most was self taught.

JFK, the second youngest president ever, spent only 6 years in Congress and 4 in the Senate.

Teddy Roosevelt, our youngest ever (and my personal favorite), spent 1 year as Secretary of the Navy, 1 as the Governor of NY, and only 7 MONTHS as VP before he became President.

And these are only some of our greatest presidents.
*Though I will admit that they all had military experience.

-Theo Epstein, at age 30, after only 12 years working in baseball (that INCLUDES time as an intern with the Orioles, then working in PR at the padres, moving up to director of baseball operations) and in only the SECOND year as GM with the Red Sox, brought the first World Series to Boston in 86 years.


-Lobbyists basically sell ads to the President. He should just walk around with a big "Exxon Mobile" sticker on his suit. And in order to best serve the needs of these companies, they are very good at spinning things to make you believe it.

-Political affiliation does not determine my place in heaven.

-I can't wait for the "you guys are both dumb" party convention. The answer is always somewhere in the middle.

-A President can't do anything unless Congress goes along.

-I would probably vote for Arnold Schwarzenegger, if he could run.

-Politicians are always all that bad, it's just a whole lot of pressure from a lot of different places. I couldn't do it.

-JJ

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Waste of 10 minutes

Sportscenter just aired Ohio States press conference after they destroyed a HORRIBLE team in Youngstown state. I just watched him name off all his players of the week.

Seriously, is there any other team that would be SO SMUG after getting annihilated two straight years in the BCS Championship game??? Seriously? Why do we care which players did well against a team whose players barely started in high school???

Monday, September 01, 2008

Um

Why does everyone insist that Barack Obama is black when he's clearly Muli-Racial? He's no more black than he is white.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Gustav!

Folks kept asking me about my parents and the hurricane. I didn't know what their plan was, as I spoke to my father a few days ago and he didn't mention a thing. So I gave him a ring.

Like I assumed, my mother is heading up to MS to stay with the relatives. My father, as expected, will be at work in the city. (For those of you who somehow don't know, my father is a photojournalist, so his job would be to record whatever insanity ensues.) As for my Coastie brother in NJ, he is being picked up by a C130, being flown to Jacksonville to wait out the storm and then perform search and rescue wherever needed. So, as my dad puts it, "I'm going to New Orleans and your brother is coming to rescue me."

As for me, I'll be hopping along in my little 737 like usual.

Monday, August 25, 2008

City Nicknames!

Here are a few city nicknames that I have heard over the past 3 1/2 years. You should be able to pick out the real city name.

Trampa
Detiolet
Sacapatatoes, Smurfville (ok this is sacramento, the second one stemming from its city code: SMF)
Midland-Slowdeatha
Lost Wages

ok so this is all of them I know. (I thought I knew more) Anybody know any others?

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

How to Make a Flight Attendant Happy

Yes, we can be grouchy. When you get stuck inside an aluminum tube with hundreds of people hours at a time and you are given the reigns to impart some sort of civilized environment, it can be enough to stress anyone out. Here's how to make our job SO much easier:

1) Be aware of those around you.

Thats it. Its not what you do to us, it's what you do to others. Well, yeah be nice to us too. I could go on all day about this, but I feel that I shouldn't have to.


And thought of the...week I guess...on the Olympics.

Isn't it funny that on the U.S. Olympic team we have Russian gymnasts (Nastia Luikin) African runners (Abdi Abdirahman) Laotian Badminton players (Khan Malaythong) and Japanese Judo (Sayaka Matsumoto)?? All of these athletes countries traditionally excel at those sports. How odd would it be to see a white boy born in Iowa running the 100 for Jamaica??

-JJ

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Eat Your Heart Out Texas!

I had a grand time at the Grand Mesa this past week. I was a little sad that I missed a lot of the Olympics, including the opening ceremonies. But I'm sure I can make up for it in the coming days.


Bluebell Shcmoobelle! Our time at the Mesa was highlighted by the amazing wildflowers that were blooming. We strolled on the Crag Crest loop trail, and it was definitely a top 5 favorite trail. Other than that, we spent our time NOT catching fish (except for Kelsie's 3) and eating amazing Wylie food.







More Pictures can be seen here.

-JJ

Saturday, August 09, 2008

Interesting Ad

Not really sure how I feel about this. I saw it while flying into DIA. Papa Johns decided to carve an ad into the local wheat fields....

In about an hour I'll be heading out with Kelsie and her mom and dad to their cabin in Grand Mesa. Be back soon, probably with pictures.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

NCAA Football Predictions

Ohio State will inevitably cruise through their Big 10 schedule, (despite one loss to some crappy team) and meet and get yet again annihilated by an SEC team...this time in Georgia.

Colorado will break the top 25.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Lookout Mountain

This morning I woke up semi-early, racked my bike on my car, drove the 1.5 miles to the base of lookout mountain here in Golden, and proceeded to climb it all the way to the top. I've never done such a climb, and actually it was easier than I expected. I even passed a couple folks on the way up! (Never mind the 2 ladies who scorched me on the way up..AND on the way down. look you punks who are about to make fun of me, I have no doubt in my mind those ladies could take you down!) Speaking of down, that ride down was fantastic. Though I was a little frightened of having a blowout and flipping over the handlebars going 60.

Next I would love to do one of those awesome mountain passes!

In other news last night Tami and I went to the Rockies game. I splurged and got us seats way down low. I even taught her how to keep score during the game! I haven't seen a Rockies victory in person since April 2007. I figured with 14 game winner Aaron Cook on the mound, playing the league worst Nationals, this was as good a shot as ever. We lost 9-4.

View from our seats

And lastly I got new insoles for my work shoes. Here are my old ones when I pulled them out.

Yikes.

-JJ

Friday, August 01, 2008

Screw your head on straight!!!

In September of 1939 Germany invaded Poland, sparking the beginning of the second world war. Germany was a world power that held a form of government called communism.* Flash forward a couple years and in America, the very word "communism" was not even to be uttered in public.

*Retraction: I've been corrected that Germany was not communist, but fascist. But the point is still in tact. Thanks for making me look DUMB, grubbsy. ;)

It's just a form of government that happens not to work. Nothing about Communism is inherently "evil". Unfortunately it all got wrapped up to become synonymous with the Nazis. Just because someone thinks Communism just might work, doesn't mean that he would like to travel Europe enslaving Jews.

Flash forward to today, and the country is all up in arms because one of our Presidential candidates is being accused of being Muslim. Do I care if he is Muslim? No. No I don't. I don't think he is, but even if he were, I don't think it matters. Just because a President is a Christian doesn't make him a good leader of a nation, and in the same way a President being Muslim doesn't make him a bad one.

For most Muslims, the only crime they ever committed was being loosely associated with the Muslims who act as terrorists...those terrorists are only extremists. I found this quote by Richard Bulliet, who is a professor of Middle Eastern history at Columbia, and he says it pretty well.

"Jim Jones, David Koresh and Meir Kahane do not typify Christianity and Judaism in the eyes of the civilized West, but those same eyes are prone to see Osama bin Laden and Mullah Muhammad Omar as typifying Islam," Richard Bulliet

I just worked with a girl who happened to be part Pakistani. She was born here to an Oklahoman mother and a Pakistani father, who was in the Air Force. She rattled off story after story of ignorant folks who constantly bring her and her family into question just because of her Middle Eastern name. Shameful.

What do you think of when you here the word "Allah?" I'll admit that for a time, in my younger and more ignorant days, I just thought of a terrorist running into a crowd of people with bombs strapped to him. Allah is only an Islamic term for God. Yeah, the same God that you and I pray to. Granted the religion from there on down is different (Jesus-Muhammed), but I think the God is one in the same.

What, do you think that if a Muslim becomes president that he's gonna just invite terrorists to come over and have a field day? Please, grow up. Vote for whoever you want, just don't let a skewed view of Islam cloud your judgment.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Field Report: Detroit Tigers

Oh you poor AL bench players. You will forever be pinch runners.

Sunday I had the day off and the opportunity to day trip to Detroit to catch an afternoon Tigers game. After waiting for almost an hour, I caught the city bus headed for downtown. On the way, I was highly disappointed in the endless poor neighborhoods I passed through. though I guess "disappointed" means I expected much, which I didn't.

The stadium was beautiful. Right downtown, none of this suburia mess, Giant Tiger statue out front. I was impressed with the completely sold out stadium. I went to the box office, and picked up one of the few tickets remaining, not unreasonably priced. (Read: Chicago Cubs, Boston Red Sox; Right field, $22)

Entering the stadium I picked up my $1 scorecard (free pencil!) and was ushered to my seat. The scorecard was nice, thick paper stock, nice picture on front. As I opened it up, I was disappointed with the poor layout. Only 10 spaces to write names??? Are you kidding? Oh yeah, in the AL theres no reason. Barely any subs, aside from pinch runners.

Curtis Granderson hit a homerun that lands 5 feet from my seat. As always, its given to a small child.

The guy behind me is also filling out the box score. These fans are traditionalists.

Tigers ended up taking the game, avoiding the sweep.

Other than that, it was overrall a pretty pleasurable experience, aside from things not working out so well at the airport. I had to check in at 550am and didn't land until midnight.

I lived.

-JJ

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Numero DOS!

Ok, if you would, please allow me just one moment..JUST ONE! to be smug. ok, here it is.






YES! This is the second time I've won the coveted award. When people find out about it, they ask me what I did to win it. Well its simple really...well...yeah I dunno. Just one day you get a letter in the mail.

Also take note of the beard. I tend to go in cycles..I trim it real short before work..kind of a five o'clock shadow sort of thing, then I don't shave until I have to go back to work. Usually my crew asks about it by day 3. And as you can see, I haven't worked in a while.

Also we went on a recent 14er hike, Mt Elbert. Highest peak in Colorado, and one that I almost climbed when I was on Trek. But the weather did not permit. This time the weather was splendid. Really, check out the pics, some of them are really cool.


Mt Elbert


-JJ

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Mistakes that make my job MUCH MUCH harder

I'm hot about this one:

Biggist Mistakes made by the luggage industry. Well, good for them, terrible for us.

1. Putting wheels on luggage. Hooray! Allows folks to bring along...well pretty much EVERYTHING. (Sonny, would you mind lifting this over your head and putting it into the bin for me? Be careful, It's filled with books.) Or gold bars.

2. Putting wheels on briefcases. Nice, now we can't even carry around paper. It must also be wheeled. And why is this bad? Case in point: Kansas City to Chicago, lots of business men who think the whole wheeled briefcase thing is completely awesome. They bring their allotment of 2 carry on items, luggage plus briefcase, however they fill both up, expand them, so now BOTH can ONLY go into the overhead bin. (DID YOU KNOW that as an airline we can be fined by the FAA for allowing people to put 2 items up there??) It just won't fit underneath the seat. Awesome. Only 60 of 137 people have gotten on and all the overhead bins are completely full. I walk around the plane looking for more room, and I see wheeled briefcase after wheeled briefcase. I just don't have the time to pull down briefcases, find out whose it is, ridicule them, and check their bags. RIDICULOUS. And the poor people behind them have nowhere to put their luggage.


Although I would like to congratulate Matt Holliday and Aaron cook who represented the Rox quite well at the all-star game. I mean, bases loaded non out and you get 3 ground balls and 3 outs at home??? amazing.

-JJ

Monday, July 14, 2008

AL vs NL, Revisited


I know, I've done this before. I admit, the American League beats us time after time. Intereleague, All Star Games, World Series. We keep getting beat. We'll probably even lose tomorrow night.

I ran across this article by Darren Everson in the Wall Street Journal? of all places, and it was very interesting. It tried to explain the disparity that has happened between the two leagues in the past years, and it came up with some very interesting theories.

1) Designated Hitter. Obviously. AL teams basically can sign big fat guys who can flat out hit, but are average or below fielders (Frank Thomas). NL teams have to worry about fielding, while in the AL it is a non-issue.

2) New Ballparks. The Tax Reform Act of 1986. This is sort of complicated, but in short, due to this officials started charging teams little or no rent, making it highly attractive for teams to demand new stadiums. More AL teams were playing in stadiums that needed replacing, so it all began with the Orioles building Camden Yards. Between 1992 and 2000, 8 AL teams have built new stadiums, while the NL built none between '78 and '94. All of a sudden AL teams were making more money than NL teams, and in a game with no salary cap, that makes a huge difference. The American League could now afford higher priced athletes.

3) The Oakland A's. They were poor, and couldn't build a new stadium, and couldn't afford high priced free agents, so they hired Billy Beane who took a new approach to building a team through what basically amounts to number crunching. It was a wild success. Since 2000 the A's have won more regular season games than anyone except the Yankees. So to compete, other teams started adopting the same techniques. The Red Sox have used techniques from the A's to win the Series in '04 and '07. Meanwhile, NL teams didn't have to compete with Oakland, so they didn't, and ended up blowing tons of money on Stars on the decline, a-la Griffey Jr.

4) Then came the ridiculous pitching deals. 105 million to Kevin Brown. 121 Million to Mike Hampton. 126 Million to Barry Zito.

So there you have it. No, I'm not bitter, I just think it's very interesting is all.
And at least it gives me something to blame.

:) JJ

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Do they never learn???

Ok so the new iphone came out. People lined up to get it. Store sells out in minutes. Remember when people did that when the first iphone came out, then apple decided to drop the price 200 bucks, and those very people were mad because they got ripped off? WELL YA DID IT AGAIN! Just don't get all pissy this time, ok?

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Road Biking Denver

I don't like it when I'm trying to work on the plane and someone tail-gates me in the middle of the aisle. Give me a sec and I'll move! Just give me and my bum a little room, will ya!??

This past week I thought that I might finally get my new road bike out and take it for a real ride. So far its just been a couple jaunts around town. So I told Tami that I'd ride to her house, which normally is a 20-25 minute drive. I get there when I get there.

See theres a trail that I notice driving towards downtown Denver. I see people biking on it all the time. So I decided to see where it leads. Little did I know that not only does it connect to the loop trail in Golden, but I rode 95% of the way to Tami's apartment without having to get on a street. The Clear Creek trail literally runs 50 feet from my back door, intersects the South Platte River trail 20 miles or so downriver, then arrives at Tami's, Via a beautiful downtown trail, about 10 miles south. It was a spectacular ride, and come to find out these trails run all over the denver area. Simply spectacular.



Unfortunately I was pretty whooped, then realized I had to make the ride back the next day. 2 days later my legs still haven't recovered. Road biking is fun.

-Jeremy

Sunday, July 06, 2008

All Star Outrage

I'll just jump right into it.

It all figures that the teams with the highest fan base, boston and chicago cubs, had the most all stars in a system that selects its all stars by fan votes and you can vote however many times you want?? It doesn't seem right to me. I was irritated to see that Matt Holliday, hitting .340, and gets to ride the pine behind a completely overrated Fukudome whose hitting .287?? I enjoy that the fans get to play a part in the selection process, but when this happens, the system is obviously broken. The starting lineup for the AL represents only 3 teams other than Boston and New York. Strange how they are the teams in the AL with the largest fan base...hmm....

In every category that Boston has a player starting, theres at least one person more deserving.

Dude, Jeter, there are arguably 7 AL shortstops who are having better years than you are. Michael Young is by far the All Star in that category.

That said, here is MY All star team:

American League

1B Justin Morneau (Min)
2B Ian Kinsler (Tex)
3B Alex Rodriguez (NYY)
SS Micahel Young (Tex)
C Joe Mauer (Min)
OF Josh Hamiltion (Tex)
OF Jose Guillen (KC)
OF Ichiro Suzuki (Sea)

National League (not a whole lot different, just getting rid of those overrated and over-voted-for CUBS

1B Lance Berkman (Hou)
2B Chase Utley (Phi)
3B Chipper Jones (Atl)
SS Hanley Ramirez (Fla)
C Giovanni Soto (Chc)
OF Matt Holliday (Col)
OF Nate McClouth (Pit)
OF Carlos Lee (Hou)

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Mountain Rescue

Friday night we had the fantastic idea to hike up South Boulder Peak...at night. And by at night, I mean starting at 9:30pm and getting back...well whenever we get back. The trail is rated at "strenuous" and we had tried it once before (Danna, twice) but we failed to bring adequate water and food, so we thought we would have another go at it.

So here we are, all 7 of us,(plus Duke the dog), donned with headlamps on a basically moonless night, trudging off into "Cat Country" (Mountain lions). Exciting.

Everything went well. It was a nice cool evening. The pace started very quickly, but slowed even quicker when we arrived at the base of the mountain. From there it was a 1.2 mile hike and a 3,000 foot climb.

A little further up, Justin was startled by a strange man who gave us absolutely no warning of his presence. He had started hiking at 3pm that afternoon, had become lost, and now dehydrated, was heading down with light from his cellphone. We gave him a bottle of water and a flashlight (to be left at the trailhead) to aid his journey. He also mentioned that we may run into his buddy, who ran out of energy further up, and was sleeping on the trail.

So on we went.

About halfway up the mountain, Barrett and Cami became sufficiently exhausted to turn back around. But the rest of us kept climbing.

Up and up it went. It never seemed to stop. Here and there I would glance into the bushes, half expecting to see a random dude lying on a rock trying to grab some sleep.

At this point we're trying to conserve a little water to help this random person we were going to run into.

then it happened. Out of nowhere I heard a "HELLO??" And I knew it was him. But he didn't appear for another 5 minutes. Then suddenly I saw this guy, hair ruffled and covered in dirt, sitting up in the middle of the trail. He looked completely horrible, and asked for nothing but water. He looked worse than I had expected, so I turned to find Tami and Danna to grab my spare nalgene and an empty water bottle. We filled it full, and he chugged. He then told us that he had already called 911 and they were on the way. He also asked for a blanket, as he was visibly shivering.

The rescue team then called his phone, and he let Rachel, one of our friends and a nurse, talk to them. From then on if they called, Rachel would give them information and updates.

In the meantime, Tami have him dried papaya and we through all the clothes we had on him, and leaned against him to keep him warm. In the meantime, we gave updates to search and rescue every so often. Then they called and wanted someone to go to a clearing and see if we could locate their car, whose lights will be flashing. So down Justin and I went, about 200 feet down, until we found a giant boulder. We climbed upon it, and were presented with a view of the entire city. And way down below, a car with its lights flashing. So we flashed them back. Using our headlamps of course, and eventually they spotted us, and the car pulled away.

5 Minutes later we heard someone yelling for below, saying "Where is Rachel??" It was 1 man from search and rescue, and Justin and I led him up to where they were. From there the pros took over. Our victim, Nate, got up, and immediately threw up the water we gave him. (I had learned a few weeks prior, from the movie "The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly," that after being dehydrated you are supposed to slowly sip water). Unfortunately he blamed it all on my girlfriends papaya, which is incorrectly identified as apricot. Search and rescue wanted to give him and iv, but he refused it, saying that he would be ok to walk down.

So after 5 more guys showed up ("That was quite the hike, eh fellas?"), and we were questioned about the possibility of our dehydrated friends drinking more than they had said (uhh, probably) we headed up the mountain and left the pros do their job.

So we summited, had a great view of the city, then headed back down. Search and rescue and Nate had already headed down, and we never caught up with them. Though on the way down, we stopped, and someone said "uhh, wheres Duke??" Sure enough, the dog had dissappeared. This is not what I wanted to deal with, for it was now 230am and I just imagined the poor dog wandering around in the wilderness for days before eventually giving out and dying on the mountain. I didn't want that to happen. But Danna, his owner, was convinced that he had gone ahead of us to the car, and from my experience of losing dogs, "when they are lost, they go home." In this instance, the car would be home.

I was hoping she was right.

So sure enough, down at the base of the mountain, we crossed a small stream, and we noticed paw prints leading out of the water. There was a collective sigh of relief, especially when 20 minutes later, still a full 30 to 45 minutes from the car, Barrett and Cami called to say Duke had showed up.

So after that all went well. Got back to the car, back to the house, and into bed by 430. Just as Kelsie was getting up for work!

-JJ

Friday, June 27, 2008

Fees Don't Fly

Here's one of our new ads. Not sure if you've seen it. I find it highly amusing. I like that fact that we're going back to our "edgier" roots.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

The Wild, Wild West


So I've obviously been on quite the western kick, after "Blood and Thunder", visiting Dodge City, seeing the movie Wyatt Earp (Awesome! and next Silverado!) and I just finished "Custer and Crazy Horse." At the moment, I don't think much of the "White Man." I just picked up "Trail of Tears." Yeah, that shouldn't help.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Mt Shavano and FIBARK!

This past weekend I climbed my second 14er in Mount Shavano.
It wasn't easy, as we (Danna, Erin and I. Tami figured 1 week is not long enough before climbing a 14er, so she stayed home) got lost once due to snow covering the trail, and we had no idea even which peak we were trying to climb, as we arrived past dark the previous night. After we reached the top, a guy up there said he had climbed 12 of them, and this was the most difficult.

That evening we were met by the rest of the crew (including Tami, on her first CO camping trip!) ready to enjoy Fibark (first in boating the Arkansas). We camped that night, then headed into town for the festivities, which included tons of food, skateboarding, and of course lots of whitewater kayaking.

So anyways, as usual, I let the pics tell the story.

Grove of Aspens



Crossing a small creek

Danna trying to find the trail..which she did...unfortunately it wound around, right back into the snow.

Erin scrambling. After getting lost, we were just climbing UP. Right before climbing yet another false summit, I noticed the trail..WAY OUT YONDER.

We traversed the side of this mountain on the left, at 13,000ft, for quite a ways.

AHA! The peak.

View right before starting the peak

Made it!

14,248ft

Danna

The three of us

Got me some gaiters for the snow that had covered the trail. There was tons of it, and we continuously lost the trail, but we figured it out.



And here are the pictures from Fibark. First is the Hooligan Race, which is just some local idiots who build odd boats, some which barely float, and just end up breaking apart. Here are two boats that didn't make it through the rapids.



And the freestyle kayak competition. It was amazing what these guys can do, including front and backflips, sometimes without their head even touching the water!






-JJ