Saturday, April 25, 2009


The NFL draft is taking place this weekend. I left at noon to play golf and knew I would miss much of the first round - which is too boring for words to describe. Why teams get so much time between selections is annoying. Anyway, I was very happy with the eagles two selections today: Jeremy Maclin and LeSean McCoy. Maclin is a speedy wide receiver and return genius, and McCoy is a shifty running back. Our offense will be off the charts good next year.

Golf today was outstanding. Dixon and Shay had come down from Cedar City yesterday so Dixon was able to join Wade and I for golf. I was worried about the dreaded wind, but it flared up on only about 2 holes - that's it. Davey honored us by showing up on the 15th hole and attempted to go birdie-birdie-birdie-birdie. It didn't happen. I didn't shoot that well, but in the end, the only thing that mattered was that I played well enough to beat Wade. I hate to lose, and last week I lost the title by one shot. Getting the belt back today was sweet vindication for me. I have to take out some clients next week and also have to schedule my match play event with Archie who has been patient while I work on getting my doggone shoulder to quite aching. My back is good - it's fine actually. I have just learned to take care of it better now. No crazy lifting refrigerators anymore or moving furniture all by myself. Plus I stretch a couple of times each day and always in between golf shots. I'm sort of pathetic on the golf course - always hitting up my golf buddies for advil and then asking them to walk on my back.....sans cleats. They're okay with the advil, not so much on the back massage part though. I'll try Craigslist.

In the past week, Alec finished his MCAT exam and now awaits his score. Tick, tock, tick, tock, tick, tock. That test is torture. We were in Salt Lake City a couple of weeks ago and I picked up one of the MCAT study guides - It could have just as easily been a Chinese novel. I laughed out loud at how hard the questions were.

We're excited to be able to speak to Jake on Mothers Day wich is 2 weeks away. The NFL draft this weekend, the Kentucky Derby the first Saturday in May and then Mother's Day. My cup runneth over.

Janae was flipping throught Time Magazine tonight (I know). She came what I thought to be an interesting blurb on the greenie movement. "Going Green? In the broadest sense, the greenest home is the one that has already been built." There you have it simple, to the point and impossible to refute that logic. Nice one Janae.

We took my mom to see Kenny Rogers last night at the Orleans. He can still sing, but his plastic surgery a few years ago messed him up pretty good. Even though our seats were in the 4th row, my mom brought binoculars so she could check out his face up close.

This is my life.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Corporate Challenge Update: Track and Field

Let's not forget about the corporate challenge folks.

Next week I'm entered in the following events (my wife is laughing out loud by the way):

100 meter sprint
Shot Put
Softball Toss (I guess the javelin toss proved to be too dangerous)

My last sprint race was in Jamaica in '05. I lost to one of the stable boys at the horse ranch in Bluefields. My first step was good, explosive to be sure, and then I sort of ran out of gas by the 3rd step, kicked it into another gear and finished strong barely losing out. The kid was scared I would beat him.

I've never done the shot put before in my life, but I have watched it on TV a couple of times. Can't be that hard.

As for the softball toss, get out the gold medal because no one will beat me in this event. After my shoulder surgery a few years back I've been able to throw everything from water balloons to frisbees with exceptional distance and accurancy. Ask anyone I've been to the beach with - my passes on the deep fade route into the surf were spot on this past summer. I will throw my arm out if I have to to win this event.

The good news is that all of the events are age restricted. This means I'll be competing against other old fat guys in the 45-49 year old bracket. Of course there's the off chance that some real runner-fitness freak will show up. In that case, I'll just have to bump him out of his lane. I'm not too worried about it.

I opted out of the flag football game tonight. The potential for me to forget my age and act like I'm 20 is everpresent and I'm still not 100% after my softball injuries. Another week to heal the ankle and knee for the track and field competition is needed.

I'll post pictures next week.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Easter Weekend in Salt Lake City

We spent Easter weekend in Salt Lake City visiting Alec and Tiffany, eating our way around the city, and watching nearly every shot of The Masters.

The Masters was thrilling and even non-golfers like Tiffany and Janae couldn't resist watching the drama unfold - especially late Sunday afternoon when Tiger and Phil went head-to-head, and then a 3-man playoff of no-names finally decided the outcome.

Of the three guys in the playoff, I was okay with 2 of them winning - Cabrera or Perry. If Chad Campbell, who played at UNLV, won, I would have quit watching golf forever. Professional golfers are a boring lot to begin with and none is more robotic or uncharismatic than Campbell. His facial expressions never changed. His mopey walk is maddening to watch and I can't stand the fact that he wore a white golf shirt 4 days in a row. Perhaps I shouldn't be surprised. His sponsor? Jani King - a commercial cleaning company. Snooze. Couldn't his agent round up at least a Denny's deal or a JC Penny gig? Jani King?

The 2009 Masters won't be known so much for Cabrera winning but for Perry choking - he bogeyed the last 2 holes in regulation to fall into a three-way tie. I give the guy props for playing stellar golf for 70 holes, but when it came time to close it out, he choked. It was hard to watch. He reminded me of Steve on so many occasions.

El Pato

That Cabrera won was cool. The fact that he said that the Masters was one of the top 10 tournaments in the world had to make the Augusta members flush with anger. Top 10? What a dis. Cabrera's nickname is El Pato. Translation: The Duck. No doubt he's on his way to Argentina to celebrate with friends and family. This guy has a personality and I'll be cheering for him in the next major golf tournament, the US Open - which he won in 2007.

We heard from Jake today which is his normal day to write home. He's been in Guayaquil, Ecuador for several weeks now and is really enjoying the city. It's considerably bigger than the other areas he has served in and the living conditions are superior to what he's had up until now. We're excited to talk to him on Mothers Day next month. As usual, we'll have a good sized crew here to pass the phone around and give everyone a chance to talk to Jake-Jake. It will be our last call until we see him. Holla!

As is customary any trip to Salt Lake requires a visit to Crown Burger, Flemings, Rio Grande Cafe and The Pub. Alas, we didn't have enough meals to get to all of these places, but we did manage to have a kick ass brunch at The Grand America on Easter Sunday. The spread they put out is fantastic.

Alec and I also managed to squeeze in the final few episodes of 24: Season 5, and the first 5 episodes of Season 6. I absolutely love that show.

Need to find out when my next corporate challenge event will be. I'm nearly healed from softball.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

A Day at the Dog Park

When I got home from work on Tuesday I wanted to take Zeus and Ray-Ray to the dog park. They love getting out of the house and going for rides in the car, and we recently introduced them to the dog park.

For those who don't know, dog park's are areas within certain parks in Las Vegas that are fenced in for canines to run around in, get some exercise, and play with other dogs. The parks are a great idea since they confine the dogs to a specific area so they want distrupt family picnics, youth soccer games, or swipe balls and frisbee's from people just wanting to enjoy being outdoors.

Even the design of the parks are good - doggie water fountains, a double gate so no one can lose control of their own dog, slip and allow the gate not to close while the dogs make a run for it. Nope, with two gates, the dogs are secure. They even have plastic bag dispensers attached to the chain link fence so you can clean up after your dog does it's business.

This would be our 2nd trip to the park in about a week. The dogs were excited to just be leaving the house.

Alas, this 2nd trip to the park would also our last trip to the park.

Zeus more than Ray-Ray is an indoor dog even though they both get mud bathes at Snooty Pets. Before you scoff, it's a few bucks more but they smell really good.

And so what we thought would be a fun late afternoon walk in the park turned into a circus.

At first, there were only a handlful of dogs, and they were all getting to know each other the only way dogs know how. Sniffing each others back side. I know, it's disgusting. Good thing we humans opt for a handshake, hug with a double pat on the back, high five, knuckle bump, kiss or any combination of the aforementioned. Thankfully, sniffing never caught on.

As more dogs showed up, we found ourselves completely unprepared for the sort of nefarious canines who are apparently regulars at the dog park.

Wanting to fit in and be social, I struck up a conversation with a guy name George. George told me he was from NY. I was shocked. Hardly. His accent, countenance and verbal machete confirmed to me that he HAD to be from NY. Fogetabouit.

Geroge owned a bulldog, Fortune. Bulldogs are surely one of the sorriest looking dogs God ever created. Bulldogs have a severe underbite and their lower teeth poke out - they look like cartoon dogs. George liked to take long drags on his cigarette and complain about everything under the sun. I had to get away from this guy. Other people showed up with their dogs and remarkably, not one dog even remotely resembled another dog. 15-20 dogs and they all were drastically different in appearance.

Our little Zeus had fun chasing the other dogs around until some big mixed breeds showed up with their owners. Aside from all the strange looking dogs is the fact that the owners themselves are stranger looking than their canine companions (except us of course).

Being relative newcomers to the dog park world we were wary of how Zeus and Ray-Ray would get along with some of the larger breeds. Last week? No problems. There were a bunch of labs who smelled the treats in my pocket and followed me around like the pied piper and completely ignored our dogs. This week was different - these mixed breed dogs were the canine equivalent of prison convicts out on break. Zeus gave them what for with his bark but instead of backing down like most dogs, Zeus found himself INSIDE THE MOUTH of one of the big dogs. All hell was breaking loose but the dogs owner was competely oblivious to the havoc going around right at his feet. At least 1/2 dozen dogs had joined the melee, and poor Zeus was soaked in dog saliva. Not only did he look like crap, he smelled like it. Zeus quite literally had the crap scared out of him.

The best analogy I could come up with was this: Taking our little pampered indoor dogs to the dog park was like taking our kids down to the Clark County Detention Center (aka Jail) and allowing them to play with the inmates for an hour.

Zeus Before and After

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Memo to Self: You ARE NOT 20 Years Old

Corporate Challenge Update #2

Tonights game against an engineering and architectural firm kicked off the softball portion of the 2009 Las Vegas Corporate Challenge.

As you can see from the photos, I give it 100%. At times, this type of zeal can be a problem. You see, amazingly, age 20 was nearly 3 decades ago and there are parts of me that don't work the same as they did in the early 1980's. This is becoming more apparent to me lately.

Our team fell behind early but after a huge dose of PMA, we rallied late but ultimately lost 16-10. It was fun to see wives, kids and friends at the game. It was also great to see the number of company people turn out to actually play.

I have to confess though that we were all a bit stumped at first with the goofy softball rules. I thought that softball was just like baseball with the exception being you toss the ball underhanded and can't steal bases.

In this softball league, each batter already starts at 1 ball, 1 stike. After I yanked two balls left and foul I was called out - I don't get that rule at all. If a guy is walked on three straight pitches, the girl batter behind him automatically goes to first (while the guy marches to 2nd). There were some other assbackward rules that simply reiterate society's need to make things equal and less hard for the losers.

The true highlight of the game was a triple play we turned to end the first inning. We were getting settled in and were down a few runs. The bases were loaded....uh, oh. Dude hits a grounder to me at 3rd, I throw the runner out that was headed to home base, Ben who was behind the plate, catches the ball, steps on the base and zips one to Darion at 2nd, and then he spun and tossed out the runner heading to first. Yes, the batter heading to first was slow. Still, probably the most exciting play that field has ever seen. It's true, look it up.

During the game I was reminded that they don't call 3rd base the "Hot Corner" for nothing. Besides the usually large number of balls hit to the left side of the diamond during any softball game that has a lot of righthanded batters, there was one guy who was as wide as he was tall. He walloped a slow pitch right at me at full speed. All I could do was get my glove on it and knock it down lest it take out all of my teeth......just like I was teased last week by Wade. "Dude, you're gonna get your teeth knocked out."

Offensively I was a dud going 1 for 2 with a loopy single and the called out the foul ball I whacked. Defensively I managed with the exception of scuffing up my knee on a hard grounder. On one occasion I even elevated off the ground and made a catch of a line drive that was headed to left field turning my ankle in the process of landing. If it's not one thing it's another.

Summary of Injuries Tonight:

Knee (scuffed)
Ankle (twisted)
Elbow (bruised)
Back (TBD)
Ego (Bruised)

Next game: Tomorrow Night - 6:30pm. I can't wait.