Sunday, October 17, 2010

Race of the Living Dead

Halloween is here, which means, CHRISTMAS is here!! I know, a lot of you are all "Grimmany, grimmany, Thanksgiving is a rich blah blah traditions of turkey! Grimmany, humbug, turn off those Christmas carols!!" But I maintain that if I can be afraid of the Mothman in June (and I assure you that I am), then I can listen to Burl Ives in October.

Anyway, Halloween.

Since the beginning of the year, Charity, Bodie, and myself have tried to pick interesting races to run every couple of months or so. While perusing the race calendar at saltlakerunningco.com, we came across this beauty-

Winner, winner, chicken dinner! So, the race was a 5k up at This is the Place Heritage Park, and when you signed up for the race, you got to choose to run as a zombie or as a survivor. The survivors got a one minute head start. Charity and I ran as survivors, while Bodie ran as a zombie.



If you are wondering if it is tough to run in Zombie Makeup, fedoras, neckties and dresses, the answer is yes, no, yes, and yes. We got up there about a half hour before race time, which gave us time to register and look at what we would be running from/with.




Soon it was time to say goodbye to Bodie as the zombies and survivors were separated. I wished Bodie good luck, but not too much luck, and Charity and I headed to the starting line.


You might ask, what kind of idiot runner takes a camera with him to the starting line? Well, the kind that wants to take pictures of the most awesome race ever. Also, the kind that forgets to charge his camera battery. The upshot is, the race account will have to get by on words alone.
So, I knew right away I was in trouble. A good runner can run a 5k in 18 minutes or better, and if I am having a good day on the treadmill, I might get close to 21 minutes. On the road I might be closer to 24 or 25. I wasn't going to outrun the faster zombies.
BUT! I was going to try. The gun fired, and I went out of the blocks like someone running from certain death. I began my tour of "This is the Place Park", from here on known as "Steeper than the Swiss Alps Heritage Park." I consider myself a decent uphill runner, but this dirt path kept climbing and climbing at a steeper rate. I thought, if I can just get to the top of this, than I will be in good shape the rest of the way.
I didn't know that there were two laps.
So, I had to walk some, but I didn't mind the fact that there were two laps, because the race organizers did some cool storytelling, with pioneer citizens trying to cope with the Zom-pocalypse on the first lap, and them all dead or infected on the second lap. It was a really cool race that I hope will be an annual tradition.
But the question is, did I survive? Well, I was passed by 42 zombies, and they had to run through 175 humans to get to me. If you figure that a hungry zombie can eat 10 people an hour, than I would have been on the borderline. The point is, if the zombie apocalypse breaks out, don't call me, or else everyone will be wondering why the idiot with bite marks shambling down the street has "Chocolate Rain" set as his ringtone. I expect to be embarassed in the afterlife, just not on the first day.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Stuff My Dad Keeps

While I was growing up, our house, like most houses, had a junk drawer filled with pens that don't work and dead batteries. But in addition, my dad had his OWN junk drawer in his office desk, filled with stuff that he knew would be useful some day. While he is away in Belarus, and therefore defenseless, I thought it would be a good idea to document these important tools, just in case anyone needs to borrow them in a crisis.

Pretty standard, right? I don't think a single junk drawer exists that doesn't have at least one house from Monopoly in it. The problem is, there are only 2 'f's that come in the box. One day, my Dad must have stepped on this somewhere near the office, got mad until he realized it could have been a lego block, and then put it in the drawer. And from that day, we were never able to spell 'forfeit' again.




Fun story: when I was in third grade, on every other Wednesday, math time would become art time. We would go and watch recordings of the show "The Art Maker," and then try to duplicate his project, which I would butcher almost immediately week after week, until I became known as "The Art Breaker." If only my father had spent more time mentoring me with this brush, I might have avoided that humiliation.


I don't know what this came off of, except that whatever it is hasn't rolled for a long time. To me, it looks like some kind of child carrying device- like a crib or a high chair. I left the rubber band on it because, you know, whatever.

I had no idea what soldering flux was until I read the wikipedia entry, but I know that my dad hasn't soldered anything for a long time. I am sure of this because I know for a fact that his soldering gun only heats up to about 40 degrees. The thing couldn't curl your hair. By the way, I love that 'PASTE' is bigger than 'soldering' on the package, and like to imagine my Dad spending a great deal of time at the hardware store choosing between the paste and liquid containers.




When I was about seven, we bought my dad a printing calculator for his birthday or father's day, because that's what dad's like, right? Doing math with calculators? Anyway, that thing hasn't been used in about 10 years, because first the battery died, then pieces started falling off, and then forget it. However, in the event that he gets his 25 year old calculator fixed, and then finds himself in a situation where he needs to print off some calculations, he will have the paper ready to go. That's also not much of a straight line on the tear job, either. Art Breaker, indeed.



Somewhere, someone keeps throwing their coat on the floor.



If you ever rode your bike to school and happened through a sticker weed patch, you recognize this thing. It was used to buff the bike tube before applying a patch, which was like, step 4 in a 10 step process that seemed to take all Saturday. Man, was I steamed when I found out that bike tubes were like 2 dollars.


Finally we have a drum pad mount. I vaguely recall seeing a drum pad around the house in the eighties. I thought that it was long gone, but now I have seen the proof that it is just hidden away. My dad remains patient, biding his time until he finally gets that drum stand that he is hoping for. Then, the practice pad shall be mounted, and many a drumming he will make!
Love you dad!


Monday, August 30, 2010

Rainy Day Fun

Today at about 6:00 a.m. We woke up to thundering and lightening outside. Poor Daisy is so scared of the thunder that she can't sit still. So, Curt and I went downstairs and turned on the TV. That helped Daisy and soon she settled down on my lap. What to do on a rainy day with a little boy who loves to go outside. Hmmmmm....

Should we build a fort? Yes!!!



What's better than reading in a fort on a rainy day.







I think Liams favorite part was making the fort CRASH in. It made him giggle and giggle. We kept having to fix it and then crash it again.


CHEESE!!!!


I'm so thankful I have a little boy that I can rough house with. There is nothing better than seeing his smile and hearing his giggle.









Sunday, August 29, 2010

A Chance to catch up part 3

In early June, our friends Justin and Kristina invited us to go camping at their favorite Camper World site in Coalville. It was Liam's first time camping, and overall he did pretty well, although at bed time he was more interested in running around the tent and flopping on the air mattress.







Two weeks later, we flew to Boston for our family vacation, mainly to see the Dodgers play at Fenway, but we did other things as well. Because Fenway always sells out, and this interleague game had so much interest, the Red Sox had a lottery to see who was able to buy tickets. I asked all of my friends to enter, and out of the six or so people who did, only Numan won. Without him, the game would have been three times as expensive, so thanks to him, and to Cami for helping us with our flights. The first pic is from our Freetom Trail tour, near the playground that was the site of a hanging tree in colonial times. The rest are from the ballgame. A nice usher at the park thought Liam was adorable and even let him stand on the field after the game, but the pics didn't turn out so well. Which is okay, I'd hate for him to see them later and decide he is a Red Sox fan.









The next couple of pics are from some fireworks displays that we went to. The first is from Taylorsville Dayzz (the two zz's are a remnant from the dark dayzz, when somebody noticed that Utah's three biggest sportzz team'zz namezz each had two zz's in them.) They do a nice job with thie fireworks, and it's always fun to go over to the park with our friends. Plus, this year, I went to use a port-a-john and it had a helium balloon jammed in the waste pit, which is a tougher riddle to solve than a rubik's cube. The other pic is from our 4th of July fireworks show, or fouthofjulireworks. Dan, Boey and Steve continued to up their game. Their game is stuffing fireworks in paper bags.





Other than that, Liam has had a great year, playing in the water. . .





. . . shopping at the Gateway . . .



. . . fingerpainting . . .



. . . playing in the sand . . .



. . . and just hanging out.




You are now officially caught up!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

A Chance to Catch Up (part 2)

Here are some more pics of what we have been up to:

Liam turned one in May. I would say that it went by fast, except that everybody says that. He still (4 months later) hasn't had his first haircut. His hair has come in blonde and curly, and is growing really well in the back. On top it has been a little slower, so he is kind of rocking the permullet look that was popular in the 70's and 80's.



Charity and Cami did a great job on the cake. At the time, Mickey Mouse's clubhouse was his favorite thing to watch. Now, he is more likely to sit through The Wiggles and Bob the Builder.




Liam loves to spend time with his "Papa Pro," Charity's dad. He has been an outstanding golfer his entire life, and has taught Liam the joy of swinging a golf club (a joy which I have not yet discovered. I once was trying to learn in my parents front yard, and with one swing, I missed my dad's head by inches, bounced the ball off the house about a foot from the front windows, and dinged our car.) Anyway, Liam will walk around drawing his arms back like he is swinging a club and say "KWWWWWACK!"




A little while before his first birthday, Liam, Charity, and Charity's mom went to "Baby Animal Days" at Thanksgiving Point's "Farm Country."






These next few pics are just some single shots from different events.

This is from the annual Easter egg hunt at Grandma Huff's house. Charity was good and made sure his eggs were filled with things he was eating at the time- puffs, mini marshmallows, etc.



Like most kids, if it has buttons, Liam wants to mess with it. We are always fixing computer display settings, trying to figure out what in the world he did to the surround sound, and all that kind of stuff.



He also has a particular fondness for rakes and vacuums. I don't expect that to last once he is old enough to use them in any sort of productive manner.



Finally, please to enjoy some celebrity permullets-