Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Picture Catch-up Part 3, Chloe

Who doesn't love pictures of the best dog in the world; Chloe.

The red, white and black huskies

Joey, Chloe and Luke

This is why a white dog at the park is a bad idea

After getting cleaned up at Hair of the Dog grooming in Canton

She likes the firetruck and the snow (at a stoplight)

Chloe talks in her sleep ...

and can keep herself busy pretty easily

Don't know why the video quality is so bad, I guess they got compressed when I e-mailed them.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Picture Catch-up Part 2, Football Games

Other than the several Ravens games I go to each year, I thought I'd like to see another stadium this year and how the crowds treat me. A bunch of friends are Steelers fans so I figured I'd head there.

Justin, Marko and I tailgating

This was a pretty awesome stadium and I can't wait to go back next year

I was really impressed how few Ravens fans were there. The Steelers fans apparently don't sell up their seats for big games like a lot of fans do here in B'more.

Overall, I was treated pretty well, even after we won. It may have had to do with being surrounded by friends that were Steelers fans, or that I didn't really try to start anything, or that I'm 6-4, 260; regardless, it was a pleasant experience.

I've wanted to see Mike Vick play live because it's hard to see the whole field on TV and what affect he actually has on defensive backs. I chose the perfect game to; the 59 - 28 pummelling of the Redskins on a cold and rainy Monday night.

Let's just say that after the TD pass to Desean Jackson on the 1st play of the game, it was easy to see how scared the DBs were that he could pass like that and it allowed him to run all over the field. I was happy with the decision to go to that game, but I wish it was somewhere else; I can't stand FedEx Field and it's a nightmare to get to/leave from.

This is from the Ravens - Steelers game in baltimore last weekend. I went to both games this year and amazingly, both stadiums were pretty silent while I left. BTW, this picture is from an iPhone app called 360 Panorama, it works pretty well during the day, but figured I'd try it at the stadium and like the results (will get one at the Ravens - Saints game next week during the day to see how much better it comes out).

Picture Catch-up Part 1, Culebra Puerto Rico

First, Happy Birthday Aunt Karen.

OK, these picture catch-up posts are going to be incredibly out of order but that's the nice thing about having a blog ... you can do whatever you want.

These are from the second weekend in November in Culebra, Puerto Rico. I went with a great group of people and it was the perfect escape from work and the increasingly colder weather.

The ferry ride from the mainland to Culebra take about 75 minutes and you get to see a bunch of the other islands off the coast of PR

These 2 pictures combine to be the view from our condo's balcony; too bad my phone couldn't capture how truly awesome it was

The ladies of the trip with our bus driver Willy; we had a party bus both nights and he came in with us everywhere we went

Some of the group chilling on our balcony

When there's drinking and available coconuts, the only logical conclusion is a coco-lantern

Our only meal out, at Eden, was excellent (had lobster that was great)

Kirby, Jackson and I after the meal. There's a reason for my face, but I'm not telling here

The group with Willy (my phone's lens had a smudge)

The ferry leaving Culebra

One of the streets in old San Juan; we had time before our flight and decided to take a stroll through

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

So yeah, still not doing much here

Wow, 55 posts last year and I'm only at 7 (including this non-post) this year.

I guess this just hasn't been something I think about very much anymore or maybe I haven't really felt the urge to share any of the boring things that I've been up to lately.

It could also be because I haven't done a damn thing to my house and that was one of the main reasons I wanted to start this.

Oh well, I guess I'll think about writing something substantial here this week. Maybe talk about the awesome trip to Pittsburgh this weekend to watch the Ravens beat the Steelers or the second job I'm starting this week at a wine bar or the weddings I have this month and next or the upcoming trip to Puerto Rico or maybe ... just maybe, I'll write about how awesome my dog Chloe is. She's pretty f'ing awesome.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Blogging Fail!

So that whole thing about me blogging more often is probably starting to get a little tiresome by now. My last post was in May and a lot of fun stuff has happened since then.

Unfortunately, my knee has been bothersome since May so the whole working out thing has been more of a crawl than a sprint. I am hovering around 253 so I guess 20 lbs. in 2 months without a lot of effort is decent progress. I have over 3 months to go and since I'm no longer playing volleyball 5 nights a week, my knee has been feeling a lot better.

As for what's been keeping me busy, I've been having cookouts or going to cookouts a lot more often this summer than in the past. I really enjoy having an impromptu get together and picking up some kind of meat and just grilling it with a small group of people. Without as much volleyball, my evenings have been free, but somehow I still haven't been able to do much work on the house. I think the 90-100 degree heat might be contributing, or maybe I'm just too content right now, but I'd really like to progress a little faster on that front.

I have a bunch of fun stuff coming up in the next few weeks that I'm excited about. I'm picking up my Ravens season tickets today which makes me happiest of all. I'm going to the Shinedown concert next week that I've been looking forward to for a couple months. 98 Rock is doing the bacon and beer for Ravens training camp next Friday and I'm pretty sure I'm going to that with a bunch of guys from my old job. The Man City - Inter Milan soccer friendly at Ravens stadium is the next day and there will be 12 of us at that. Can't wait to tailgate.

That's all for now, let's see when I post next.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Monday Update - Week 1

Every Monday (or in the case of a holiday, Tuesday) I am going to try and post about my progress toward my goal of 220 by November and how what I am doing it working out.

I succeeded in going to the gym every [week]day last week and also met my goal of not drinking at all throughout the week. I even held out when my beach volleyball team went out after our match on Tuesday and I got the burger and beer special (Turkey burger, no cheese, only some of the roll) when I gave my beer away. Went to a party Saturday night with my bottle of water and still had fun, although I really wanted to get a late night pretzel from the square. I went shopping and bought a bunch of baby spinach and several chicken breasts for meals this week and am looking forward to cooking more.

I also been weighing myself everyday when I go to the gym. I figure doing it on the same scale at right around the same time everyday should provide a decent tracking metric for how I am doing on that front. When I started last Monday, I was 273; today I weighed in at 262. At the end of each of these Monday posts I'll put a tracker with the starting week (May 17th), the last week, and the current week.

That's really all I got, I'm going to track my lifting too, but I need to get used to that first since I have never really lifted on a regular basis and probably never correctly.

May 17th - 273
Last Week - 273
This Week - 262

Just Booked - Culebra Trip

I just booked my flights for a trip to Culebra, Puerto Rico and am already excited. The trip isn't until November, but everyone wanted to get everything planned as early as possible. I'm going for a long weekend with a bunch of friends from work, including some that have been there many times before.

Culebra is a small island off the eastern coast of Puerto Rico and doesn't have very much development to take away from the natural beauty of the location. The two pictures below show the islands location relative to Puerto Rico and the lack of development via satellite view.

We are staying in a couple villas by one of the numerous beaches. There is very limited access to these beaches so for the only people around are those staying at the same "resort" as you. Below you can see how the place is surrounded by trees and water with just a small access road leading to it. I really can't wait to get there and have that kind of privacy.

Oh, and the best part? This is the view when you walk out of the villas:

I'll probably post about this periodically as I research stuff to do and buy things I'm going to take.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

The Walking Dead

As an IT professional that doesn't really do much IT other than work on a computer, I read a lot of blogs throughout the day. One of those being a science fiction/science current event/anything sciencey or nerd related blog called io9. It was here that I was first introduced to The Walking Dead.

AMC, creator of Mad Men and Breaking Bad, was rumored to be considering TWD as a new television series. Normally this information would just be something I would digest and move on, but the thought of a ongoing series about zombies peaked my interest. After some google-based research, I found that it was definitely happening and was based of the graphic novel series from creator and author Robert Kirkman. A little synopsis from the AMC website about the show:

"AMC has greenlit The Walking Dead as a six-episode series based on the comic book written by Robert Kirkman and published by Image Comics. The Walking Dead tells the story of life following a zombie apocalypse. It follows a group of survivors, led by police officer Rick Grimes, traveling in search of a safe and secure home. Andrew Lincoln (Love Actually, Teachers, Strike Back) will portray the lead role of Rick Grimes while actor Jon Bernthal (The Pacific, The Ghost Writer) will portray the character Shane, who worked with Rick in the police department before the zombie disaster. Other cast includes Laurie Holden (The Shield), who plays Andrea, one of two sisters who join the survivors of the zombie plague, Steven Yeun as Glenn, an expert scavenger and Sarah Wayne Callies (Prison Break), who plays Rick's wife Lori."

Really, until I started writing this post I had no idea how soon the show would be out because once I got a hold of that first volume, I was hooked and stopped caring about the TV version.

I've always been interested in reading the source material of TV shows and movies adapted from comics and graphic novels, but never really got around to actually going to the comic book store and picking them up. When I finally did, I picked up several I had been interested in, including the first Walking Dead volume (the others were Batman: Year One and the first volume of Joss Whedon's run on Astonishing X-men).

When I first opened the book, I was disappointed to find it was in black and white. I guess I'm glad I didn't figure that out at the store, because I probably would have passed on it. After getting 5 or 10 pages in, I couldn't stop reading. The opening reminded me of the beginning of 28 Days Later and kind of continued along the same route of trying to piece together what happened and finding a safe place (along with your loved ones). I'm not going to go into the story now, I'll save that for when I've read more of the series (currently on Volume 7) and have gone back to re-read the beginning. I will say that I completely forgot about the black and white aspect until I picked up another one of Kirkman's books (Invincible, more on that in a later post) and the colors kinda punched me in the face.

This is a great story so far with a lot of ups and downs that keep you interested in the characters and what happens to them. Each volume takes somewhere between 45 minutes to an hour and a half depending on how much you analyze the panels so two were perfect for my trip up NYC on the Megabus. I've also be giving the to my not quite 60 year old mom after I'm done and even she loves them. Of course, it should be noted that my mom is more awesome than yours and her love of zombie apocalypse graphic novels only proves that.

That's all for now, I have volumes 8-11 sitting at home and need to read them ASAP.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Trying this again and my plan

So it's been a long, long time since I've been on here, but I figured while I have it as an outlet, I may as well use it. I just checked and I haven't posted anything since the Snowpocalypse way back in January, wow.

I guess I should provide a little update:
I still have a job (which I like but need to work harder at)
I still have a dog (she's still awesome, but has been shedding her winter coat lately)
I still have a house (that needs a lot of work)

I think that about catches anyone that's interested up.

Now for where I am right now. I've started trying to work on myself since I realized I want to start looking for a serious commitment (not like right now though) and I'm not happy with myself so I don't see how I would be able to make someone else happy.

The first thing that I'm working on is my health. This is going to be super difficult since I have always been a failure at committing to things. I've never been unhealthy as far as any of the medical tests go other than my weight, but I've also haven't been able to run a mile continuously since grade school and have had so many of my joints injured from football, basketball and volleyball that I'm in some form of pain just about every day. I play volleyball 3 or 4 times a week now, football 2 times depending on the season and just signed up for softball this week. None of these activities seem to help me get in better physical shape so I've also started going to the gym (today was day 3 in a row so I haven't gotten over that hump yet).

As for eating, my plan is to diet for 8 weeks and transition into a sustainable lifestyle change (don't look for the wing night every night and cook more of my own food). I also started this 3 days ago and so far other than being a little tired (probably more to do with lack of sleep), I feel fine. I've been having 2 slimfast type shakes, a cliff bar after I work out and a reasonable dinner each day and haven't found myself feeling hungry yet. That may also have something to do with the gallon or more of water I've been consuming each day.

I'm using FitDay and iFitness (on my iPhone) to track everything. FitDay is great cause it makes pretty graphs and helps me count calories (goal is to stay under 1500 a day for those first 8 weeks than move up to 2000ish). iFitness is great cause it shows me (literally, it has videos of proper form) all the different exercises I can do and helps me plan out each day. I'm mostly doing cardio and various ab workouts, but also throwing some high rep weights in there too.

My weight on Monday, May 17 was 273; my goal is to be 220ish around November 6th since that's my sister's wedding and I'm going to Puerto Rico the week after with a bunch of friends from work.

Since I'm updating so many other things daily, I don't see why I can't fit this in too. I want to have at least 10 posts a month. Sorry, but there will be a bunch of Chloe related posts since she's an awesome dog and I'll try and write about my new time/money waster; graphic novels.

Until next time.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Chloe in the Snow

Adventures of the white husky Chloe when it snows. I know it was a few weeks ago when it snowed down here, but the pictures weren't on my camera and were a pain to get.