Category Archives: Vacation


Dang Colorado, You Crazy

Just got back from our annual Colorado vacation. It was pretty fun, though all of the in-laws were there so it was pretty busy and there wasn’t a lot of time to ourselves. I did the downhill trails with the father-in-law again this year but I had a GoPro strapped to the bike this time. Once I get my camera equipment back I’ll scrap together a video of the highlights (if there are any- it may just be me slowly going down a mountain.)

2012 Appleball Champion

Most of the Krew assembled up near Ontonagon, MI last weekend to yell at each other and eat fried food.  And drink beer.  And gamble.

But in the middle of all of that we were supposed to play out the epic pitching duel between Madd and Cal.  One at-bat for all the marbles… would Scientist burn up Cal with three straight heaters? Or would Cal hit a 500 foot homerun for the ages?

Well, we certainly won’t know this year because Madd forgot the goddamned baseballs.  Instead watch what actually happened…

So, there you go you suckers.


Scotch Proof

I bought a bottle of Macallan 17yr Fine Oak for our UP trip; the 10 yr is my Number One favorite scotch of all time, and when we were in Sint Maarten I bought a bottle of the 15yr for $35 and had a blast with it.  I assume ol’ pinky will be one of a dozen bottles of scotch drained while we fight about who has big blind or whatever but I will savor it.

I’m on vacation in Vail, Colorado at the moment and jeezus kreezus it’s just as nuts as you’d expect (hint: mass murder occurred nearby).  I just pedal my ol’ mountain bike around during the day, then take a nap, then it’s happy hour and I’m listening to the teevee tell me about mass murder and child rape.  Not the greatest vacation environment ever but I suppose the UP will make up for it.  Also, Ryan Braun said the Brewers sucked.  Also, AT&T never sent me a bill for June or July.

Whatever, just need to get through the week without my lung collapsing or elevation sickness, and then I’ll be back home.

VEGAS! 2012

Yes, I’m the star of the hit show: Vegas! This one’s a reboot after four years in development hell. Seal Team Seven dropped into McCarran Airport at 9:30am on Friday and we were checked-in at TheHOTEL by 10:30am.

A little lunch (tequila) and we were off and running at the tables. I won $75 playing craps, and then wandered over where the rest of our group was playing roulette. Played my usual style (heavy on 20, lighter on 12, spread the table to hedge) and in four spins I went [12, 12, blank, 20]. After the back-to-back twelves I was heavyheavyheavy on the 20 when it hit- I think I won $500 or $600 on just the 20. I kept hitting numbers so on an off chance I just threw a hundo on 20 to see if vegas had decided it was my time to fucking SHINE. Nope, not that lucky.

We went and threw down a G-ball on steaks and scotch. I had some roasted marrow bones that grossed out most of the table (though Spacebee did eat some!) and then we headed back to the tables. Went up another $350 at craps and then met everyone for live band karaoke at the House of Blues. Sat and drank beer, vodka, and more during that little run and then they closed the show down around 2:30am (right before I was up on the list to sing Jump Around!)

I’d been drinking since lunchtime (the full list: beer, scotch, vodka, tequila, red wine, and two hundred 7&7’s) so I swayed over to the roulette table again and played some more numbers. I hit the 12 and 20 again and was up about $400 when I decided to take my winnings and quit while I was ahead. I colored up my chips, tipped the dealer, and what I had was a bunch of blacks and one $25 greenie. I threw the greenie on 20 and it hit on the next spin. Boom: $900 holmes. I was so drunk that I didn’t even get excited. I just swayed there and grinned for about 5 minutes, then went to pee.

Two of the folks we were with went to bed 45 seconds before the big score, and then the other four of us were trying to decide what to do. The other couple asked if we wanted to go to bed since we’d been up since 3am, Vegas-time, and I yelled “I’m rich biatch! We’re partyin’!” We went to the Minus 5 Ice Bar in the Mandalay and I bought fur coats for the ladies so they could sit on an ice bench and drink Snowflakes. Spacebee was very wobbly in the ice bar, and everyone thought I was the Incredible Hulk the way I was still functioning like a hue-man given the amount I’d drank. We retired at about 4:30am.

So on Friday I bought into chips for $200 after lunch and when I went to bed I had $2400 in chips in my pocket.

Cue ominous, distant thunder.

I spent some fo the winnings to rent a cabana by the pool on Saturday. They were pretty booked up but they reserved us one and said we had to get downstairs before 10:30a or they’d charge my held card number and give away the reservation. I awoke to a bad (but not too bad, considering) hangover, pulled clothes on, and stumbled down towards the pool at 10am while everyone else slept in or ate breakfast. In the elevator I cursed at the thumping disco music to the amusement of the other occupants. Halfway across the vast Mandalay casino floor I had to stop and give myself a pep talk that I’d make it to the pool. I approached the cabana host counter and asked the nice lady working there if she’d kill me. She looked concerned and said, “…no.” They took me over to the cabana and the host asked if he could get me anything. I asked politely for coffee, and then I curled up in a ball and slept in the corner of the cabana until everyone else showed up (some not until 2pm).

Later in the evening we had dinner and then headed down to Fremont Street. Holy fucking hell that place has gone to shit. By which I mean: it used to be a respite from the dumb bullshit on the strip, but every casino I walked into had $10 or $15 minimum tables and were packed to the gills. The booming music, the collective wal*mart patrons of america clientele, the dancing grannies. I could put up with all that for $3 craps, but no fucking way am I gonna endure that for the same table minimums I would find on the strip.

I lost every bet I made on Saturday.

I lost nearly every bet I made on Sunday.

We went and saw the Love show at The Mirage on Sunday night. Afterwards we wandered into O’Sheas and whooped it up with some $5 craps. Then we walked all the way back to the Monte Carlo and jumped a cab from there back to the hotel due to whining and yelling by the ladyfolk.

This morning I checked my funds and saw that the three dinners, cabana rental, minus 5 ice spectacular, and most of all 48 hours of consecutive losses had brought me back from my winner’s high on Friday. Ah well, we did have a fantastic time and the big score on Friday more than makes up for the dreary gambling on Saturday and Sunday.


[UPDATE] is now officially blocked on the Intuit intranet.  Probably because of the name of the post, but maybe not. banned in one company

Rose Bowl 2012

Badger Pep Rally
Badger Pep Rally

The Rose Bowl was what it was: disappointing but fun. We arrived late, late Friday evening and slumped into bed.  Saturday was the pep rally on the Santa Monica pier, and we headed down early to get a bite to eat at the Scientist-recommended Mariasol. No sea monster sightings, but I did spy the fishermen/federal marshals hanging out with their “fishing poles.”  The marine layer here has been utterly bonkers all weekend. The morning starts out sunny, but by noon you can’t see more than a block away.  Case in point, by the time the Badger players arrived at the pep rally it was around 45 degrees and visibility was about 50 yards.

Saturday evening our original plan was to go out in Santa Monica and take it easy. I didn’t want to chance a club with lines and lists, and preferred the idea of just having a six pack in our hotel room.  Until, that is, I found out that See-Yew and the Bay Area Badger crew were partying in Pasadena for NYE.

We finagled a ride to Pasadena and back to Santa Monica (on NYE!) and headed out.  I met about ten million former fuddruckus direct-reports and drank two gigantic Jameson shots.  The shots were curiously world-ending for me; I didn’t leave the room on New Year’s Day and just laid around and moaned loudly.  To Spacebee’s credit, she got sick of the moaning and left the room for awhile to see the sights.  My total meal consumption on New Year’s Day: hamburger/fries, pepperoni pizza, ice cream & cookies.  Sigh.

Badger Blast
Pregame Tailgate

The day of the Rose Bowl we woke up early and got dressed in our epic multitude of Badger Stuff.  Beads, pins, shirts, stickers, sunglasses, and more.  The bus to Pasadena arrived late and we sat in traffic for a looong time.  We had tickets to the 10:30a-1p Badger Blast tailgate (all-u-can-eat/drink) but didn’t end up getting there until 11:30a.  Sad face, but we still managed to get a brat and a few beers.

The game was very exciting, and the only problem was that we were in a micro-island of Badger fans swimming in a sea of Oregon fanatics.  It made it all the more sad at the end as it was slow-going getting down the aisle what with Ducks fans dancing in it.

Tuesday was probably the best day we had out in California; the sun was shining in Santa Monica and after checked out we had a few hours to kill so we walked around the downtown area, had luncho at Ye Olde King’s Something-Something, visited the Palisades (bro!), and wandered down the pier one more time to see if we could catch a glimpse of the Monkfish. Alas! No monkfish.

The Palisades, Bro
The Palisades, Bro!

Vacation Winding Down

Spacebee and I are headed for San Francisco this morning; it’s the staging ground for the final day of our trip.  We’ll check-in, throw on our Badger gear, and then head over to Aces to watch the game.  We have it on good authority that Badger fans are welcome there.

I also threw out an invite to Cal and his Lady to head on over and join us.  Maybe he’s out lawyering tonight, though.

It was a hectic as shit week out here, but Spacebee seemed to have fun and I was able to juggle work and fun-onna-bun socializing.  Fuddruckus and Manders took us to Cin-Cin in Los Gatos, and it was A+ fantastic.

So tomorrow morning we’re headed home- I’m looking forward to quite awhile with no traveling, and I made sure we’re stocked up on wine for the holidays. Woo!

Too Fast Too Furious

I suppose I could have used ‘two’ up there as well; say lah vee.

Since the comments are coming very fast (and very furious) as Cal and I take on the mighty theoretical rhetoric (theorhetoric?) of Madd and Wwhazz I decided to post a quick update on the many goings-on since the last… thing.  Jesus, it was just last Thursday.

In Patented™ List Format:

  • After the great Mad-Railers Open Coding Day last Saturday I’m way back into side shit.  My typical cycle has me getting very excited about Ruby/Rails/entrepreneurial side work and then my attention gets drawn back into my day job due to hectic schedules until I mope around my house all day and lose all interest in everything.  Then I meet up with some cool people doing cool tech stuff and the juices get flowing again.  It was great to finally meet the core members of the Madison Rails community.
  • As a consequence, I started updating again. For now.  Well… I made one post.  It’s living up to it’s tagline.
  • My esteemed future brother-in-law has acquired the ability to order Brewers Opening Day tickets for face value.  He invited spacebee and I to accompany him and my sister.  I am excited about this.  Brewers Opening Day @ $200/scalped ticket in the 2nd inning = boo.  Brewers Opening Day @ face value and park far away = hell yes , BY GAWD.
  • I bought myself one of these here fancy keyboards; I’ll let you know how it goes.
  • This Saturday (Feb. 26th) is spacebee’s 30th birthday– let’s all come together and wish her the very merriest time of her life… what’s left of it. Because now she’s old. OLD.
  • We’re headed up to Devil’s Head for a small ski trip on Mon/Tue of next week.  HOLLLLAR if you want to join in- weekday rates are very cheap.
  • It won’t stop goddamn snowing here in Madison- just be spring already, goddamnit.


Blizzard Wizards Part TOOOOOO!


[UPDATE] I have lots of pictures up now on Flickr. Check them out.

Lots of stuff happened this week while we were in Sint Maarten (they spell stuff oddly there), so let’s get right to it:

Vacation Pros

  • Extremely warm and beautiful weather
  • Had no part to play in the Midwest Snowpocalypse
  • Delicious seafood everywhere I went
  • A rockin’ speedboat day tour of the island, including visits to a topless beach and Stacy whipping my sunglasses to the bottom of the ocean
  • Blackjack (boo!) and roulette (yeah!) situated 10 feet from the lobby of our hotel
  • I proudly and excitedly purchased a bottle of Macallan 12yr Fine Oak (see right) which I did not know existed.  I have brought home with me 2/3 of a bottle for y’all to enjoy.
  • Disturbingly low-priced jewelry
  • All the Canadians (the good ones)
  • Weirdly, when you’re all-inclusive (including booze) they make the drinks 10 times stronger.  For about half the trip I would wake up with a oh-shit-I’m-late-for-school start and wonder how I got there, then think about the numerous rum goblets I drank by the pool, as well as the half dozen Carib beers I had with dinner and at the casino.

Vacation Cons

  • We met (maybe) five service workers in our hotel and surrounding restaurants that weren’t outright rude, hostile, or indifferent to us.  Bar none, it was the worst collective service I have ever had in my entire life.
  • We stayed in Phillipsburg, which is the port where the cruise ships come in.  Very, very big con: the entirety of the town runs on the Cruise Ship Clock. Cruise ships leave port around 5pm, at which point Phillipsburg becomes a scary ghost town filled with packs of stray dogs.  None of what I just said is an exaggeration or lie.  The night we got there, we figured we’d stroll into town and get some dinner at around 6pm.  We walked, and walked, and walked and only saw shuttered doors like the ones you see in real bad parts of Market St in SF.  Like, we had no idea what these stores were because it wasn’t bars or a steel chain curtain.  There were Star Wars blast doors that covered the whole front of the building.  We hesitantly made our way deeper into the area and found nothing but wandering stray dogs and people yelling at us from porches.  We headed a block over to the boardwalk (hoping to find jamming beachside bars or restaurants) and literally the only thing we found was a deserted Hard Rock Cafe where the few workers unlucky enough to be stuck on a night shift paid us little to no mind.
  • Do not, under any circumstances, assume that just because a place says it has ‘wi-fi’ that it actually does or that you can use it.  I paid $73 for eight days of wifi access at the hotel, and as Stacy can attest I spent most of that swearing at my iPad and threatening to throw it out a window.  Their scheme is brilliant: have too little area coverage, and then hire someone to power cycle the wireless access point approximately once every two minutes.  Also, hook your access point up to the internet with a 1600 baud modem and let your entire guest list share that bandwidth.  Loading took, on average, 10 tries and 15 minutes (to see one page).
  • All the Canadians (the rude and boorish ones)
  • The heat pump in our apartment failed sometime when we were gone, so we got in late Saturday evening to a freezing house and a pissed-off cat.
The View

Phillipsburg is actually really banging during the day.  All those scary deserted streets are actually filled with Cartier, Ralph Lauren, Lacoste, and a quadrillion jewelry stores during the day.  And there are three dozen jamming beach-side bars whose happy hour runs from 11am-noon. On the other side of the island

The fact that, even with enragingly bad customer service, I still had the time of my life says something about the place.  I’d definitely go back, but probably wouldn’t stay in the same place.  I’d probably try to catch a joint down in Simpson Bay, where there actually is a ton of nightlife and stuff to do outside the hotel after 5pm.

That’s about all I’ve got for now- I’m going to rest my weary, travelin’ bones and then cheer my ass off for the Super Bowl this evening.  Once we get all the pictures we took uploaded from Spacebee’s camera then I’ll get some links up.  There. Are. Some. Good-uns.

Did Michigan Springer really throw his blackberry into an icehole? Was it really gravy? Go Packers.


Birthday Man

Happy Birthday to Everyone, Young & Old!

Happy Birthday to Wwhazz! Happy Birthday to Madd Scientist! Happy Birthday to Manders! Happy Birthday to Alandovos! Happy Birthday to Peapods! (Shameful omission, that.) Lots of spring fucking goings on in the late 70s and early 80s.

At any rate, we had a swell (SWELL) time this weekend at a combination Wwhazz Birthday Whazz Tournament & Poker-Playing Contest-slash-Green Bay Packer Victory Party at the Dry Bean.  I knew that Green Bay had won when I approached wwhazz at the bar and said “What’s up, man?” and he succinctly responded, “Bargle.”  The bar was loud so I asked for clarification; “What?” I asked.  “Frohnum,” he blurted out as he slumped his head down onto the bar.  I knew then (as I know now) that it was time to leave.

So yes, yes the good ol’ Green Bay Packers are in the Sooper Bowl on February Something.  I’m not sure of the exact date because from this Wednesday (tomorrow!) until the day before that Super-Duperest of Bowls me and the little lady will be down in St. Maarten on a beeeeeeeeeeeeeeach.  I’ll be dozing and she’ll be drinking some sort of rum-infused cocktail through a curly straw.  I think they have some activities where you can swim with sharks, or even walk through a bad part of town with your money and passport dangling out of your pocket.  I’m excited.

I heard they have casinos both (a) in the hotel and (b) elsewhere on the island as well.  No craps in the hotel, but supposedly poker.  HO-CHO!

Anything else happen this week? I guess Scientist learned how to deliver a baby; I hear he’s taking reservations for midwifery starting in late Smarch.