Thursday, January 27, 2011

Sick(ly) update

Heading into Thursday night and starting to feel human again. Everyone around me at work is hacking, coughing, and sneezing. That place is worse than being in day care for kids when communicable illness is involved. Everyone is passing this cold thing back and forth! I hope to be well enough on the weekend to take the 67 year old rifle that looks almost new to the range this weekend for the first time for me. We shall see.

Young daughter is off on a two month adventure at an AF service school in the deep south. I will miss her weekend visits with her lively band of friendly pooches. Have a good time and come back safe and sound M!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Sick of being sick

So this past Friday was the beginning of a three day weekend for me. I had big plans which involved going to the range to try out a WW2 Lee Enfield that just found its way into my gun locker. But I have been fighting a cold all week and I thought that I would feel better the next day so I pretty much stayed home taking weak-sauce cold medicine. Saturday was a bit worse but I was brave and took my father in law and young son to the Griffith observatory in (of course) Griffith park. The weather was beautiful and the observatory was recently remodeled and looked great. I felt a little worse but kept taking that medicine. Sunday the cold hit me with both barrels. I went to the pharmacy and got the cold medicine that you have to sign for. It was a little more effective, meaning I could actually not cringe from the sinus pain for about an hour out of every four that the medicine dose was supposedly covering. I spent the night on the couch so as not to disturb the Missus in her sleep. I didn't sleep except one time when I did fall asleep about 3 a.m. only to be woken by one of the dogs crashing into the dog gate that keeps them in the kitchen and out of mischief. It sounded like a jail break in progress. No more sleep for me. I emailed my boss at 1 a.m. to tell him I will be a no-show today. So now I am home, feel absolutely miserable and actually would rather be at work. Who could imagine? May I be done being sick now please?

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Speed Racer

One of the perks of my job is that I get to play with machines and equipment. As the city fleet manager I was invited today to the Orange county fairgrounds to do a 'see and drive' on the new Chevy police sedan, the Caprice. It is made in Australia and is a purpose built police car. The 365 hp engine helps it go really fast and the stability control helps it stay on all four wheels. The Chevy guys laid out a twisty course with cones in the empty parking lot and we got to drive the cars. Lots of squealing tires and smoke from the rubber as the cars twisted and turned. We got two runs, one to recon the course and the second to have fun. There was a co-driver in the shotgun seat to make sure we didn't turn the car upside down on the run. The guy was pretty casual when I got in (old grey haired guy - huh - he probably thought) but I got his attention on the first run and then got down to business on the second go. I knew I was doing good when I saw out of the corner of my eye that he was doing the classic mashing of the phantom brake pedal while his arm was straight out to break his head first slam into the windshield. Silly man, I had it completely under control. The car and I were one. When I exited the car one of the uniformed cops said to me 'You where having fun out there!' which was a compliment since some of the other drivers pussy-footed through the course.

Old grey haired guy huh?

Sunday, January 2, 2011


Today started as a rainy overcast day. About mid-way through mass the rain turned to sleet and then to beautiful snow. The congregation started to murmur and the organist broke into several bars of "I'm Dreaming of a White Christmas". Young son raced outside to witness the 'act of God' as he put it along with other young and enthusiastic kids.
After we got home in the afternoon he and I went Christmas tree hunting with the Jeep and trailer again. This is the main source of our winter firewood supply. the Missus felt I am sufficiently grown up and last father's day gave me a chain saw which I put to good use yesterday to cut up 5 trees. We rounded up another 5 today which will give us enough wood in a year when it is dried out for most of a winter's recreational fire season which is about one night a week.
The snow got heavier and the Missus took some pictures:

It continued to snow until this evening but now the temperature is dropping and the slush on the roads will probably freeze. Tomorrow's commute could be an adventure! The non Grouch family members should know the last time any snow accumulation occurred was in 1989 when we got several inches of snow overnight which pretty much shut this area down until the afternoon. It will be interesting to see what the morning brings!

Saturday, January 1, 2011

New Year's Eve and Happy New Year

The Missus and I have a philosophy that whatever is done New Year's eve will be done all the new year. With than in mind young son and I started the day by heading to the shotgun range to bust some clay birds. He is really good at it and the more he hit the more I missed. I enjoyed seeing him do so well. Then we went to lunch at Wendy's. See, two favorite activities firmly established for 2011!
In the evening we had our good friends Ted and Jenelle over to play a fun scrabble-like game called (I think) "Bananas". Ted and I maintained our dignity throughout the multiple playings of the game but the ladies got increasingly silly. It may have been the rum cake and apricot brandy slush.
It was a great time and firmly established some more activities for 2011: eating, having fun, and laughing lots.
Happy New Year! I hope it is a great year for one and all.