Wednesday, February 27, 2008

On the Road

As the title may suggest, I am again on the road. This week it is Salem, Oregon for a 3 day DUII enforcement training. Today was day one, so far it has been pretty interesting stuff. I am looking forward to the next couple of days.

So, since there really isn't too much news to report on my end, but I have come across a couple of links I thought I would pass along.

I haven't seen this in Astoria. Yet. I am not ruling it out.

If you read Penny-Arcade (and the news posts) you will have already seen this.

Thats all for now. Be excellent to each other.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

The Power of Voices

I doubt this particular bit of news found its way to too many of you out there, but Dave Niehaus was just elected to the baseball hall of fame as a broadcaster. Make no mistake this is an honor the man has earned and then some. Dave has been the voice of the Mariners since day one of the franchise.

But this post isn't exactly about how awesome Dave is, how he deserves to be in the Hall of Fame. Hearing about Dave, and also having read on of Canzano's better columns about the Schonz has had me thinking about the voices that define teams and sports for me. More than any specific game, any player or any heroic performance those two announcers are my childhood sports memories.

I know a couple of you out there grew up in Portland and grew up as Blazer fans. I am still a Blazer fan, and Brian Wheeler isn't bad. But it doesn't always feel like listening to a Blazer game either. The voice of Bill Schonely is so iconic to me it is hard not hearing it, even 10 years after he was run out of the organization. I know he is back doing some work for the Blazers and you can still hear a few of his wonderful phrases but so many are lost. It's almost worst hearing the few that they have as sound bites for the radio broadcast or for Standard TV commercials. Yet, every now and again, from somewhere deep in the back of my memory snippets of his calls come back.

I am thankful that Dave Niehaus is still working for the Mariners. Like Schonely, he doesn't work full games anymore, but there is couple of innings each game that he does call the play by play. I know there will come a day when he is too old to handle even the light duties he has and we will hear his last call. If I am aware of it on that day, I am sure I will feel sad, wistful perhaps. I have a feeling it won't really sink in until the next summer though. One day, when I am in my office tuning into the game I will forget that Dave is gone and expect to hear his voice, and it won't be there.

This post got a little sentimental, which wasn't my original intent. In the end, perhaps the Northwest should be happy to have been blessed with two fantastic, iconic, and long-lasting play by play announcers.

My oh my.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Thoughts on Ties

So, I am not exactly what most would call a metro-sexual. If you are reading this blog, it is likely that this isn't news. At least one person has described me as “the straightest guy I know.” I am not sure that was meant as a compliment, but what the hell... I take what I can get.

All that said, I do have at least a small interest in men's fashion. Specifically, the areas of men's fashion relating to the proper fit, cut and style of suits, dress shirts and the proper way to tie a tie. To me this is only natural since I wear a shirt and tie most days. Also, show me a guy that didn't at least have some interest in knot tying as a kid. All boys love knots, I don't know why, but they do! This is an interest I have discussed more then once with one of my good friends, J.T. We have downed more than a pint talking about ties and tie knots. So what is the point of all of this?

Let me give you a little background first. As discussed in the paper, and later their book “85 Ways to Tie a Tie” given certain assumptions there are only 85 ways to tie a tie (excluding mirror images). To those of you interested in the basics, look here, for a more in depth look, start here.

After careful review of the literature, it seems to me (unless I am seriously misreading this information) my two favorite tie knots are not amount those considered among the “13 useful knots.” I find this deeply disturbing. I started tying these knots in the mistaken impression that they were a Windsor and a Half-Windsor. As far as I can tell, this was due to some bad information on the web and my misreading of some of what was out there. That said I think both of these knots look just fine. I am not the kind of guy that needs marching orders for everything, and I am certainly not going to stop using the knots, but I find it interesting that these knots aren't on the list.

For those of you that might be interested, here they are (using the notation most commonly used) Maybe I am just not reading the symbols and tables right...

My version of the “half-windsor:”

Li, Co, Li, Ro, Li, Co, T

This knot is a little asymmetrical, but not overly so. Really, I think it makes a nice compliment to a well tailored suit. It is not my everyday knot, but some days when I am feeling slightly off kilter myself it is quite nice.

My version of the windsor:

Li, Co, Li, Ro, Ci, Ro, Li, Co, T

This is my everyday knot. This knot is quite symmetrical and makes a nice, medium sized triangle. It is neither as large as a try windsor, nor as difficult to tie. I feel it fits better in most shirt collars (especially button down collars) than a true windsor.

I don't know. Maybe I am way off base. For those of you out there that wear ties, or have an eye for such things, tell me what you think.

Also... for the cooks out there, this site is awesome.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Exciting Saturday Night

Exciting! By which I mean sitting at my dinning room table writing a post while my girlfriend sits at the other end play World of Warcraft. I do have cookies though. And cookies are awesome. Alright, so I am figuring this post will be mostly an update as to what we have been up to. After that I will probably go back to intermittent silence punctuated with some rambling sports posts and other half formed thoughts.

First, Work!

I am still with the DA's office. If I haven't mentioned it, we recently (within a couple of months) moved into completely remodeled offices. It hard to describe the improvement, but let me try. When I started I had an 8x6 (give or take) office with a window. Pretty swank! Until you realize it wasn't in the DA's office. It was out the back door, kind of set off from everything else. It looked a lot like a broom closet door. Then the workers got started remodeling the 3rd floor of the courthouse where our offices had been. So we moved into some temporary digs on the 2nd floor (near the elk and deer heads). My "office" was a former file room that I shared with 2 other people. It was narrow enough I could touch both walls when I stood in the middle, and maybe 15 feet long. Anyway, short story long, my new office is awesome.

Really, work in general is pretty good. I have a pretty good handle on my caseload at this point and it feels easier and easier to keep all the strands in the old duder's head. This month is pretty light. It doesn't look like I have any trials set this month. I am going to a DUII enforcement conference at the end of the month. Being the giant dork that I am that should be pretty fun. March is shaping into a busy month on the trial calender. I will try to let you all know how that goes when I can.

Side note: The Girlfriend is starting a new job on Friday. We are excited. There may even be covert jig dancing. (Free associated note: An undercover officer infiltrating the mob actually used the last name of Covert. And they never suspected him...)

Second: Non-Work! (A broad topic, but I couldn't really think of other ways to break it down.)

I am working my way through FF XII when the mood strikes me. I am fairly impressed with it. I like it more than FF X to be sure. I never could get into that one.

I am also doing a bit of reading. I got started on the Three Kingdoms thanks to an awesome Christmas gift from Paul. It is fairly dense and it is taking time to make a dent. But it is good so far. I have also been reading my way through the entire transcript of the Rosenberg trial. I am not sure why I decided to do it. I remember reading a short news article about a motion (Petition actually,) to unseal the Grand Jury records on the case. Then I just decided, what the hell, the transcript is available in a nice handy .pdf, why not read it.

That is about it for leisurely pursuits at the moment. The weather hasn't been good enough for much outdoor activity out here. I don't mind getting wet, but when its wet, cold and windy I tend to stay inside. I watch a little TV, but nothing to exciting.

I think I want to subscribe to a couple of the criminal law journals that are out there. I have had a couple of ideas for scholarly articles, but nothing with any real creative/scholarly force behind it. I have been thinking maybe if I dig into some of the literature that is out there I might find a little more energy for it.

Closing - The house.

I will spare you a lengthy discussion of the plumbing ordeal from the last 2 weeks. The important thing is that now we can do dishes.

But maybe even better then the clean dishes: The house is, for all intents and purposes DONE!
There will always be a couple of little projects to attack, but it is done. Feel free to check out the pictures below. Also, if any of you (that is the "yous" that I actually know) want to come for a visit there is a functional and furnished guest bedroom. Day visits also rock.