Gone With The Wind ?

Next up for my commuting pleasure, Gone With The Wind.


41 CDs = 49 hours.

Dug, I have doubts.

Brighton Night Ski

I went night skiing at Brighton last night with Mark.

I was in college that last time I night skied and I didn't like it much. But I really enjoyed it last night. And it only cost me $17.

The snow was soft with no ice. It snowed lightly the entire night but not so much I couldn't see. And it wasn't too cold (mid to high 20s).

At night the resort seemed very quite and serene. There weren't very many people there.

I hadn't seen Mark for months so it was good to catch up.

The skiing was so good we stayed until nearly 9 (closing). Here's what we did:

We ended the evening with dinner at the Porcupine Grill. Good food.

I'll certainly be doing more night skiing.


Had a bathroom face-off last week. It went like this:

My opponent had at least 2 steps on me. No doubt, he would reach the bathroom first. I had a moment of indecision. Odds are he was going for the single urinal which left me with the stall or abort and retry.

In a flash of insight I went for plan C:

Up the stairs to the bathroom above. And the urinal was free. Yeah me!

P.S. Going #1 in the stall isn't so bad. I have to do it often with 40-50 people on my floor. I just didn't feel like stalling it this time, and I didn't want to give my opponent the satisfaction of seeing me relegated to the stall. I may need professional help.

Ski, Finally

I finally got out to ski.

Steve and I went up the Alpine Loop road from the Provo Canyon side.

There was enough snow covering the road and it was snowing lightly. Skiing up the road there were only a few other tracks, a bit surprising since this was the first decent snowfall all Winter and on a Saturday.

Steve just below the summit.

It felt good to be on skis.

It snowed pretty heavy the whole time. At the summit we ducked under the roof of the kiosk and ate. I discovered I was soaked. I dressed pretty light since it was fairly warm. I should have worn a waterproof shell.

It was a slow drive down, the road was very slick. At Sundance a car had gone off the road and crashed into a tree. It was slushy until the mouth of the canyon then just wet.

At home I took a long shower to get warm again. Then took a nap. I was wiped out.

Today I've been surprisingly sore. It seemed like a pretty mellow ski. The snow was a little sticky and the fresh snow took a bit more work. But mostly I have no ski legs. Hopefully we'll keep getting snow so I can fix that.


I had a religious experience today. I feel I can share it with you, my close dissociated internet friends.

I was just watching TV when my favorite televangelist comes on. Seinfeld. I'm idly watching when...

(uh, sorry but you'll have to click away because the embedding isn't allowed for this video clip.)

Needless to say I was blown away, blow oh own away. Some may say it's just a coincidence that two of the restrooms at my new job have full-length stalls (the fortresses of solitude), but I know better. It's a sign. A reminder of my religious heritage. A call to repentance.

For years I've joked that the inclusiveness of the Seinfeld cannon on nearly every human topic qualifies it as a religion. I couldn't find any Seinfeld churches, but I'm sure there will be. Seinfeldology? It already has it's own holiday, Festivus. And it's foretold by the show itself:

(another no embed clip, humor me.)

Based on the success of Mitt Romney, I predict that in 2092 this country will elect a Seinfeldology President. You can tell your grandkids you were there when the movement started.

Bonus stall clip:

Dry Winter Ride

Another Saturday, another winter mountain bike ride. But it was so warm and the trails so dry it was hard to believe it's winter.

I was going to meet up with Keith, Dan and crew to ride, but I was running late and didn't want to take more time detouring around the canal construction so I went up the water tank road. When I got to the top I looked down Zorro for 5 minutes but couldn't see any riders so I went on.

(I was a little relieved. All those guys are fast and I didn't feel like being the sweep.)

It was high 30s when I left the house but by the time I hit Betty it was in the mid-40s. And the trails were either bone dry or nicely snow-packed. Wonderful conditions.

After passing the Altar I took Upper Belt to 051. Up top I got nice views of the valley.

This is how much snow there was at the highest point. Crazy for mid-January.

I was wary of ice descending into Dry Canyon, but it was just as Rick said, gripy packed snow. The two steep spots were more exciting with the snow.

When I arrived at the Dry Canyon trail I wanted more so I pushed the 150 yards up to the connector trail over to Curly Springs. It was almost all dry and good to ride.

When wet the top is sticky mud, I was happy it was dry. I went a little ways up Curly Springs and it was dry, I was tempted to ride it but I had to get back to take my boy laser tagging. So I took a steep little trail that dumped me onto the old road with the gate at the bottom and then took the gate bypass trail.

I meandered down some other trails then took BST back. Does this look like winter?

On the way down I ran into Steve W., and a bit later, Adam and new neighbor Jeff. Adam had passed Jolene earlier, which I was glad to hear that she was out riding.

The laser tag place was jammed so we left after getting our reservation. We hoped to see some hang gliders / paragliders at the Point, but the wind had just shifted. So we roamed around Cabela's then hit the laser tag, Rachel, Kara, Kade and I. We had fun.

Another very fun Saturday ride. Such a strange winter.

New Year Snow Ride

Snow is not the natural habitat for a bike, but it sure is fun sometimes.

Saturday around 11 am I headed out for a ride when it didn't like like a good day for a ride. It had snowed and the clouds were so low I thought I'd be riding in fog up in the foothills.

Turns out conditions were excellent for a winter ride. Only a thin layer of snow (1-2") and no mud.

I made my way up to the Altar. I wanted to clean it but goofed up and put a foot down a few times.

I thought I was smiling for this self portrait, but it appears my face is partially frozen, or I was more than a little winded, or having a stroke.

Continuing up Lament I encountered some old ice under the snow and spun out a few times.

The snow was the light, packable type perfect for snowballs and it crunched under my tires the whole ride.

Up on 051 I went looking for Prayer Circle. Part way out I took a wrong turn and ended up back on 051. Lap #2 I made it all the way to Area 51. It's a primitive trail, and I like primitive trails.

Going down Area 51 (westbound) was fun and fast (for me, in snow). And going down GWT was even better. I had a silly grin on my face the whole way. Saw a flock of 15+ turkeys.

Back at the Altar I went part way down Frank then took Belt and ended with Rollercoaster.

Arriving at home I couldn't feel my toes but I still had a grin on my face. This ride made my weekend.

$150 Android Tablet

I like gadgets. And every so often I become entranced by some new gizmo and want it, badly.

Fortunately, for my bank account and my wife's commitment to our marriage vows, I'm the opposite of a spend-thrift (such a strange term, wouldn't spend and thrift cancel each other out leaving the meaning to be neither?). OK, I'm cheap.

So the result is: I find low-cost ways to get gadgets.

I've already documented my bargain bike lights.

This post describes how I ended up with this nice Android tablet for $150.

What you see is a hacked Nook Color ebook reader. (Not to be confused with the newer, more expensive Nook Tablet which looks similar, just a slightly lighter color, but can't be converted to an Android Tablet, yet.) The stock Nook Color runs Android but is overlaid with an ebook reader interface developed by Barnes and Noble. It has a high resolution 7" touch screen, a decent processor, good battery life and is fairly light weight. I bought a refurbished unit from Overstock.com for $150 (looks like they're out now).

First I rooted it (gained root access to the operating system) and installed CyanogenMod 7 (CM7, a tweaked version of Android 2.3) on the internal memory.

This worked until I did something wrong and it wouldn't boot. I decided I'd rather leave the Nook stock and run CM7 off a microSD card so I could revert it back to an ebook reader by simply removing the microSD card.

Several forum posts warned that a quality microSD card is important. The red-packaged SanDisk 8 or 16 GB cards I bought at Walmart worked for me.

I followed these instructions, then later replaced the plain CM7 with this enhanced MiRaGe Kang build. (I learned a new word: Kang - Taking another's work, sometimes modifying it, and claiming it as your own.)

This hacked tablet runs every app I've tried so far (here's a community created list). It's handy to have such a portable computer. We browse the web, check email, Facebook, play games, watch movies, etc. Jolene and I have been reading the Fat Cyclist book using the Android Kindle app (an odd twist, but it works perfectly).

It was a fun project at a bargain price. It's turned out to be popular with the whole family. And it sated my gadget lust, for now.

Update: You can buy a refurbished Nook Color for $149 on Barnes & Noble's eBay store.

Three Ride New Years

I've had a nice New Years holiday.

Friday I got off work early and rode the Shoreline trail with Jolene. It was sunny and in the 50s. The trail was mostly dry. On the way home we were treated to this nice sunset.

Saturday we went ice skating with the in-laws. It's a tradition. We all had fun. But I missed skating with Jolene, the skates hurt her leg where the metal bars are. Afterward we had soup.

Then I went for a ride. I did the River Loop (I think that's what the lunch crew calls it). Up watertank, up Betty, Belt, down Frank and Johnson's Hole and the connector to Nun's Park, then up the BST and down Indian Hills. The north-facing BST was, surprisingly, dry and really good shape.

When I started this ride my legs were a bit sore from the ride the day before. And it occured to me that it's been a good while since I've done rides on back-to-back days. I thought it somewhat perverse that I enjoyed feeling of the previous day's ache as I climbed.

I haven't been riding much with the new job and winter, so I wondered how my legs would do on the climb up the Bridal Veil BST. To my surprise I did OK. It seems my fitness hasn't completely evaporated.

Coming down Indian Hills I caught another nice sunset.

Today we got our Pass of Passes at Trafalga and did a round of miniature gold while we were there.

Then I went for a ride (yeah, 3 in 4 days). I just missed Shammy but met up with Mark and Bry at the Altar. We went up to the puddle then went down Crank. I was considering going over to Dry Canyon but there had been some serious patches of ice on the way up and I didn't like the thought of encountering ice on any of the steep declines down Dry. We finished off with the Race Course and headed home.

Riding the last two days of 2011 and the second day of 2012 has been a nice way to send off the old and start off the new year. I hope 2012 is a good year for all of you.