Tuesday, April 24, 2007
The clipless pedals and shoes are a major improvement over the toe clips I'd had on the bike since I bought it in 2001. I didn't think I'd see much difference, but I feel like I've got a better connection with the bike and that my pedaling is a more fluid motion with the clipless pedals. Walking in the bike shoes is a different story. I have to be careful walking up and down stairs with my bike. The shoes don't have a flat sole -- they're more like ladies' heels with the heel broken off. When I'm using the stairs I have to make sure I put my entire foot on each step, not just the toe or the heel, or else I feel like I'm going to slip. But as with other things in my cycling habits, I wish I'd made the switch to clipless years ago.
Mileage for 2007: 70
I haven't settled on a mileage goal for this year, but 1200 sounds reasonable.
Sunday, April 22, 2007
Today, hung over from a friend's birthday party last night, I nearly succumbed to the temptation to spend my entire day inside watching baseball, basketball, and hockey on TV. In particular, the HD feed for Mets-Braves game looked so crystal-clear it was like I was at the game. That's when I realized I could be outside enjoying the weather in RD (real definition) instead of watching it. I went to Carl Schurz Park and read a book and engaged in some people-watching. Thanks to one of my ongoing work projects (finding a provider for wireless network access for traveling attorneys) I'm writing this post outside a Starbucks a few blocks from my apartment. I could get used to working outdoors like this.
In other news, I think I need to get another cat for Mr. Starlite to play with. I talked to one of my neighbors on Friday evening, and she asked me if I was at home during the day. I said no, and she told me that she was home and heard Starlite crying most of the day. He's a vocal cat most of the time anyway, but I'm beginning to think that he really does miss the company of other cats when I'm at work. I've decided that I'll get another cat after I settle my apartment lease renewal. My lease runs out at the end of May, and I've already notified my landlord that I want to renew it. If my rent increase isn't too substantial then I'll get another cat as soon as I know I won't have to move. If I do end up moving (highly unlikely, but still a possibility) then I'd get another cat shortly after settling in a new apartment. Either way, he'll have a new friend soon.
Monday, April 16, 2007
Thursday, April 12, 2007
The TV weighs about 80 lbs, so I was wary of trying to set it up myself. I'm not mounting it on the wall, so I just had to attach the stand and move it into place on the new entertainment center. I tried to get a friend from work to stop by and help, but when he didn't get back to me, I did it myself. I set up the shipping box lid as a work space with towels to cushion the TV, then gently tilted it over onto the box and removed the base of the shipping box. I attached the TV's base, then pulled the box lid over to the entertainment center. Then, having moved the old TV into the office, I tilted the HDTV back onto its base, then lifted it two feet onto the entertainment center. A few cable connections later, and I'm watching HD cable now. Not all the HD channels work yet, and apparently I have to pay extra to get ESPN HD and a few other channels. But the ones that do work (most of them, including HBO, Showtime, and Cinemax) look fantastic. I'm so happy with it. Even turned off, the new TV looks beautiful. Tomorrow I'll get my HDMI cables from work, use those to hook up the cable box, and connect the DVD player.
I know how I'm spending my weekend: on my ass, watching TV and movies.
Wednesday, April 11, 2007
So now I'm playing the waiting game. As Homer Simpson once said, "I hate the waiting game. Let's play 'Hungry Hungry Hippos' instead!"
The Pittsburgh Penguins are back in the NHL playoffs for the first time in six years. In honor of that achievement, check out this video of highlights from this past regular season.
The Penguins may not be favored against the Ottawa Senators, but seeing this young, talented team make the playoffs has made me proud to be a Penguins fan again. I see a Stanley Cup in Sidney Crosby's future, and thanks to the recent arena deal he'll be wearing a Pittsburgh Penguins uniform when he hoists it.
Tuesday, April 10, 2007
As for the TV I'd picked out, I decided it was too large for my living room and started looking at smaller sets. And I'd had enough of Discovery HD's nauseating programming, so I went to a Circuit City near my apartment and watched movie and TV clips on their TVs. I settled on a 42-inch Sharp TV, so now it's just a matter of paperwork and scheduling.
I don't think I'll be watching much of the Discovery Channel on my new TV.
Monday, April 09, 2007
The sad thing is that if I'd been there that morning, I might have stopped for a few minutes to listen, but I doubt I'd have recognized Bell or even realized that he was anything other than a better-than-average musician. And I've heard Bell in concert before. Although if I'd happened by while he was playing Bach's Chaconne, I hope I would have paused. That's just one of the most beautiful pieces of music Bach ever wrote.
Friday, April 06, 2007
The Best of Dan Dierdorfisms
Monday Night Football
Listed in order of occurrence through the season
- "That was a three-yard pass. That is how far the ball went in the air."
- "There's a guy who had some Dr. Al's elixir at halftime."
- "That's as good as ugly can be."
- "That guy is a football player."
- "A good attribute for any linebacker to have is a moderate measure of insanity."
- "It takes a lot more than that to injure Carl Banks. That thing's got to be dangling to keep Carl Banks out of the game."
- "Irving Fryar used to play for New England, and now he's catching passes from Dan Marino. Irving Fryar must pinch himself everyday."
- "I'd like to have a neurologist examine Dan Marino, because he must have different nerve endings."
- "When you're a special teams maven like [Steve Tasker] is, you're a couple bubbles off center."
- "I am proud to study at the feet of the master."
- "Those guys are gonna go back to the sidelines and feel really inadequate."
- "That's an odd-looking ball."
- "All great quarterbacks feel what they can't see."
- "We had a shot that showed pretty graphically that his finger was dislocated and we feel the need to pass that on to America."
- "We're talking about one of the most beautiful spectacles in nature . . . and I don't mean my golf swing."
- "I think Favre need to go sit on the bench, cross his legs, and take a few deep breaths. He's looking a bit stressed."
- "There's 'Achy Breaky Hearts,' Al, but with these guys, it's achy breaky knees, arms, and so on."
- "I don't know what's worse -- him doing it or me talking about it."
- "This is a game played by tough people."
- "We've seen Neil O'Donnell be nifty back there."
- "Steve Young's cocktail frank is in for a match tonight."
- "There's not an offense in the NFL that uses its tight end like the '49ers."
- "O go, you Husker, go." (referring to Tom Rathman, Nebraska graduate)
- "To say that 2:47 is enough for this opportunistic '49er offense to score a touchdown . . .[long pause] doesn't have to be said."
- "Whoa, this is surgery without anesthetic."
And a few extras from Dan's co-hosts:
From Al Michaels: "If you had the sound down, Dan's gonna come over and slap you."
From Frank Gifford: On Michael Jordan: "What a great tight end he'd make."
Many thanks to all who assisted in collecting these fine words of wisdom throughout the season. Your efforts are greatly appreciated.
Tuesday, April 03, 2007
Last night my friends and I held our annual seder for the Jews and "Jew-curious" at James & Jess's apartment in Brooklyn. Our seder is a tradition that goes back to 1994 at Georgetown, when we didn't want to go to the official Jewish Student Association celebration, so we had our own and invited all our Gentile friends. We missed a few years when we didn't all live in the same city, but for the past four years we've had the seder. This year the majority of those present were Jewish, which I think is a first. Only one guest was not Jewish, and he's been to our seder before.
Since none of us are particularly devout, our seder combines traditional elements with some innovations of our own. For example, each year I have to Google "seder plate" to find out what goes on it. We didn't have a shank bone this year, so James substituted a giant frozen chicken neck that thawed as the seder went on. We don't have a matzah cover, so we use paper towels. We only have one hagadah, so we pass it around and take turns reading the various blessings and prayers. However, we did have a brisket, matzah ball soup, and three bottles of wine, one of which wasn't kosher for Passover so we drank it before we started the seder. As a result, we got started late, around 8:45 PM, so we didn't get to the meal until 10. By the time we were done eating, we were all sleepy and ready to go home, so we finished the last two cups of wine, welcomed Elijah, and looked forward to next year in Jerusalem in about 10 minutes.
And I've already fallen off the Passover wagon. I had some Life cereal for breakfast this morning, and it's got wheat flour in it. Although seven hours is better than the time in college when I left the seder and went directly to a keg party with green beer for St. Patrick's Day.