June 19, 2008
I was thinking about reality shows the other day, and I just came up with an absolutely perfect idea:
The premise would be simple. Take 12 (or more, as the producers see fit) people who want to go to outer space. Put them through many different astronaut-style challenges, like someone training to be an astronaut would have to do, but with competition. At the same time, throw in all the twists and turns of a reality show to make it interesting.
The winner, then, would be given a ticket to ride on Space Ship Two (the joint venture between Burt Rutan of Scaled Composites and Richard Branson of Virgin Galactic). The pre-sale tickets for that are currently going for something like $200K, but my guess is that the advertising/branding opportunities for Virgin would make production of this deal a no-brainer.
It’s got all the requirements for a good show: exciting premise, simple concept, and like most reality shows, can be a very lucrative commercial for Virgin (who is trying to break into the US airline market), and can reach viewers [like me] who may not be interested in the typical “American Idol” talent competition.
I think it’s a winning idea. I’d even try to get on the show!
June 2, 2008
I’m known for the occasional complaint about California… But it does have it’s benefits!
Click the picture for a high-res version, as the small size doesn’t do it justice.
May 29, 2008
Again with The Princess Bride… I do not think it means what you think it means:
May 28, 2008
Just thought of this, as I’ve been sidelined filling out twelve different documents and emailing 4 different departments just to get something (that we’ve done before) done for a customer:
For each action you wish to undertake, there is an equal and opposite mountain of paperwork and bullshit that you must complete.
May 19, 2008
The homebrew club I belong to is planning on doing something very cool. Many members of the club are brewing their own version of a Russian Imperial Stout, a very strong beer which stands up well to aging. One of the members of our club recently started his own brewery (more on that in a future post), and happens to have a number of bourbon barrels sitting around that he’ll use for aging of certain beers.
So each member who wanted to participate has brewed some Russian Imperial Stout, and all of those beers will be blended after fermentation and aged in one of the bourbon barrels for 10 months. It should be a very cool thing to be a part of.
Due to the strength of the beer, it needs to ferment at least 3 weeks (preferably 4) to be ready to be added to the barrel. This past weekend was that 4 week mark, and our plan was to brew on Saturday morning. Between my brother-in-law (Dustin) and I, we were brewing 10 gallons, so that when the beer is complete, we’ll each get a full keg out of it.
I was running late, so Dustin started the brew without me. By the time I arrived, the mash was just about complete, and it was time to transfer our mash tun from the floor onto the rack we use during the sparge. This mash tun, of course, had 10.5 gallons of water, had 40 lbs of grain, and itself weighs about 20 lbs. All in all, it probably weighs 150 lbs when completely full, as it was on Saturday.
When I arrived, Dustin had placed the wooden handle of a rake through the handles of the mash tun to lift it. I looked at the rake, and thought to myself, “that doesn’t look as sturdy as the handle we usually use”, but I didn’t say anything. We picked up the mash tun, and started walking over to the destination. We got to the destination, started lifting the tun, and CRACK!
40 lbs of grain and the entire jet-black imperial stout mash ended up on the garage floor.
That cut our brew day very short. We didn’t have time to go out and re-start the brew, and that means it’s pushed out until this weekend. It has to be done this weekend, or we miss the window for the group brew, and they’re expecting us to have that beer ready, as having less than the expected amount will screw up the whole process. This is now twice as hard, because Dustin will be gone all weekend, so I need to find an extra pair of hands to help out, and still end up brewing in his garage. All while not pissing Joanna off, since it was SUPPOSED to be the last brew day for a few weeks, and now I’ve got to do it again.
About the only bright point was that we kegged & bottled the IPA. There are a few competitions coming up, so we really needed to get that done. It’s not fully carbonated yet, so I don’t have any real tasting notes. It did come out a bit higher in alcohol than intended (at about 7.5%, rather than 6.5%), but overall appears to have fermented cleanly and is on its way to where it should be.
But oh, how I wish I had stopped and told him to use a different, more sturdy, handle!
November 10, 2007
Well, at least the new camera arrived, so the pictures are good this time!
Wyatt in a contemplative mood:
Yeah, Purdue lost, but he’s thinking about Notre Dame getting beat now!
October 30, 2007
Well, after a little over a week, it’s finally starting to sink in that I didn’t win the Sam Adams thing. That being said, there are still some fun little things trickling in.
For example, I was interviewed by CraftBeerRadio.com for the competition, and they put all their interviews (not just the two winners) into their podcast. Check it out if you get a chance, I start about 6 minutes into the podcast.
There’s another cool thing that Sam Adams had prepared for myself and my co-brewer, but it hasn’t arrived yet. Once I get that, I’ll be sure to post some pictures
October 15, 2007
Well, I am back from the Great American Beer Festival in Denver, and unfortunately I have to report that I did not win the Samuel Adams Longshot Competition. In all honesty, I did get to taste the winners’ beer, and I really can’t be too upset, as Rodney’s Weizenbock and Mike’s Double IPA are both extremely good.
The folks from Sam Adams took care of us this weekend, and there were some really cool events that we had access to. The festival was definitely something I’ve wanted to attend since I learned of its existence, so getting that chance was great. I got to meet Jim Koch, which was cool. So a big thanks to Rob & Kelly in particular, and all the Sam Adams folks I met in general, are in order. As I’ve said before, it was one of my 15 minutes of fame, and it was certainly an enjoyable minute. If all goes well, I’ll try to be headed back within the next few years as well!
October 5, 2007
For those of you who know me in the real world, my cellphone finally kicked the bucket last night. Which is good, because the phone absolutely sucked anyway, with horrendous reception, constant dropped calls, and generally being a cheesy, poor-quality product.
So I’ll be unreachable by phone for the near future. You all know my email address, so that’s the best way to get a hold of me.
June 27, 2007
Hey, just a personal tidbit, for my real-world friends & family that I don’t talk to all that often. I’ll have a new phone number as of Friday. E-mail me if you need an update.
June 23, 2007
Yesterday I was on a mission to get a haircut during my lunch break. I knew I needed to stop to get cash for a go-kart excursion with coworkers after work, so I looked up barbers near the bank, and found one in the same strip-mall. I sure had no clue what I was in for!
I ended up going to the “Leisure World Barber Shop.” For those unfamiliar with Orange County, there’s an area in Laguna Woods/Laguna Niguel known as “Leisure World”. This is a bunch of condo and home communities designated as senior living areas. I was a bit familiar with this area 2 years ago, because every time I found a condo in my price range in Orange County, it was always designated as a “senior community”. With those prices, I was halfway interested in securing a fake ID that said I was 60 just to buy one…
Of course, I was just in a random strip mall, not in a place designated as senior-only, but I walked into a big barber shop and was the youngest person there by at least 30 years. I was a bit worried, because there’s a bit of a difference between the way I style my hair and the way your average septuagenarian does. But I got a haircut anyway.
Of course, that wasn’t even the half of it. The [65+ year old] lady who stood up and ushered me over to cut my hair was about 4′6″. I sat down in the chair, and I was still taller than her. I ended up having to get the entire haircut slouched down in the chair just so she could see the top of my head!
All in all, though, it was a pretty decent haircut. And instead of the $25 fee I get charged at the places my wife wants me to go, I got my hair cut for $8 (plus tip). Maybe I’ll have to go back, and make friends with Bernie, Flo, and Al. We can compare joint pain (my knee hurts when it rains, an effect of my motorcycle crash, and years of martial arts have made my wrists sound like canastas), I can give them advice on their grandkids… We’ll party like it’s 1949!
March 12, 2007
Well, March Madness is just about upon us. Purdue managed to squeak into the Tourney, but has a tough road as a 9 seed. Assuming they can beat 8-seeded Arizona, they’ll walk into #1 seed Florida in the second round. There’s no shame in losing to the #1 seed, though. Purdue has a relatively new coach and a young team, so that would provide something to build on next year. Considering how unlikely we all thought before the season that we’d even make it to the dance, that’s not bad.
I know everyone probably has constant offers of bracket competitions, I’d suggest heading over to Coyote Blog to join in his now annual tournament. I participated last year and it was a good time.
February 18, 2007
Britney Spears checked into a rehab facility and then abruptly checked out, a source confirms to PEOPLE. And then on Friday, she returned to Southern California â€“ and she shaved her head completely bald.
There’s something wrong in her bald little head. You stick a semi-normal little girl into the celebrity pressure cooker, and eventually it gets to be too much. If anything, I think it might be an issue that nothing in her life is really “hers” any more. No matter where she goes or what she does, she’s in the public eye. No amount of money can give you back your life, when the paparazzi and the celebrity hounds have turned that life into a product, for which their demand is insatiable.
The cult of celebrity in this country is sickening, and Britney Spears is a casualty. She just wasn’t strong enough to own her life when the “fans” (which, of course, is a word short for “fanatic”) tried to take it for themselves.
I’ve often said I want to be rich, but I NEVER want to be famous.
February 9, 2007
We decided that when my wife heads to CA for 7 weeks for her sister’s wedding, she’s going to take the dogs with her. I’ll probably be traveling constantly, and those kennel bills rack up quickly, even if they don’t take up much space!
Here’s Spanky, aka LazyBones, in his little red sweater. Despite the fact that he’s the young one, he’s really just a cranky, little old man at heart.
And then of course there’s the crackhead, Guinness. I get to have him riding on the plane with me. I’m sure that will be quiet and stress-free!
One of these days, I’ll try to get some video of these little maniacs in action…
October 17, 2006
Really, would you expect a liberal to say something this friendly to the forces of liberty?
If an adult in this country, with his or her own money, wants to engage in an activity that harms no one, how dare we prohibit it because it doesn’t add to the GDP or it has no macroeconomic benefit. Are we all to take home calculators and, until we have satisfied the gentleman from Iowa that we are being socially useful, we abstain from recreational activities that we choose?… People have said, What is the value of gambling ? Here is the value. Some human beings enjoy doing it. Shouldn’t that be our principle? If individuals like doing something and they harm no one, we will allow them to do it, even if other people disapprove of what they do.
It’s okay, Barney. You can come out as one of us. I’m sure your family and political party may not approve, but then, supporting freedom in the face of government isn’t very “socially acceptable” these days. Maybe, if you really get adventurous, you might start advocating economic liberty? You may have to add a subscription to The Economist to your repertoire, but it’s a small price to pay to finally let your true colors shine through.
Bravo, Barney. We’re here, we’re libertarian, get used to it!
Hat Tip: Catallarchy
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