Tag Archives: Eagle River

Photos With a Pulse

8534577680_ff8d252d61_zAs part of my quest to challenge and enhance my skills with photography, I decided I would try to take some self-portraits while I was up north last weekend.  They turned out… OK.  At best.  I found that I was much better at taking them outside than I was indoors.  Maybe it was the limitations of the “studio” inside Mom and Dad’s house; I had trouble finding a decent backdrop to use, and I really was just lighting those shots by the seat of my pants.

I haven’t registered for that online photo class that I bought just yet, but I’m going to very soon.  I really want to improve in this aspect of photography.

3/7 Follow-up: here’s one of the aforementioned self-portraits.



Had a nice visit yesterday after work with an old buddy from E.R. who I haven’t really been in touch with since we graduated from high school.  Both our lives afterwards went on different trajectories, and it just so happens that we have landed, at present, living just a few miles apart again, and more importantly — we landed in very nearby seats at a recent Brewers game.

Chatting with Clint for a couple hours over beers was a good thing.  It sort of made me realize how much we’ve changed (and probably, everyone from those days has changed) since then, going through unique paths of experience, and forming new world views around them as adults.  But, at the end of the day, there are things about us personally that made us friends before, and they still remain.  32-yr-old me is drastically different from 14-yr-old me, but there must be something essential that stays the same in certain ways.  Ditto for my friend.  Looking forward to rekindling an old relationship whose history is strong and important to me.

Down, But Not Out

I have caught a whiff of whatever illness befell Michelle earlier in the week.  I seem to have the symptoms under control with a steady dosage of generic Day-Quil every 4 hours.  I am not about to let a little cough and runny nose keep from going skiing on one of my last available weekends of the winter.

So, we are overcoming both weather and illness in order to persevere– rather than staying at home for a quick day trip to Cascade Mtn near Madison, we will be driving up to E.R. this evening, staying @ Mom & Dad’s, and then we’ll head up to Indianhead on Saturday.

I better get done packing before Michelle is out of work; enjoy your V-Day weekend, however you choose to spend it!

Well, I Don't Need More Coffee

I think I drank about half a pot of coffee at home this morning, but I had a need to get on the Internet, so I took a trip into town and the Brew Moon coffeehouse.  They have free wifi.  You can’t just sit outside using their webs like a chump, though, so I had to buy something.  I will drink this coffee very, very slowly…

After a third day of the deer hunt, with one or two to go, I am fairly certain that it will end uneventfully.  Not that big a deal, really.  At least I got to sit in the woods for a while.  I don’t have anything really specific to blog about today, so if you’re busy shopping you can probably just proceed through and ignore this post…

I pulled into my parking space across the street from the coffee joint this morning, and I plugged 50 cents into the meter.  The girl in the car right next to mine stuck her head out the window and said that the meters didn’t do anything anymore, and there was no need to plug ’em.  “Well what the hell are they still here for then?” I laughed.  Probably just to make the out-of-towners look like chumps.  And it worked!

Oh hey, so what the hell happened in India?  Being completely out of touch with current events is probably the most frustrating thing about a weekend spent in E.R.  So I’m going to try to read up on this…

Got some miscellaneous other stuff to get done here and only about an hour to do it, so I’ll just encourage you to enjoy the rest of your holiday weekend…

PS – Going to meet up with Joe and April tomorrow, so I’m looking forward to that.  If you are in Eagle River for whatever reason, feel free to call!

We'll Give It Another Shot

I tried Twitter very briefly for a couple days back in May.  It was of virtually absolutely no use to me.  Part of it was, “why the hell would I blog fewer than 140 characters?” and another part was, “If I spend all my time telling people what I’m doing, I won’t get anything done,” and still another part was, “I don’t have all these text messages to burn…”

There are a few changes that have occurred since that caused me to reconsider.  Here in the present, I have a lot more texts at my disposal per month; I’ve switched to a more text-happy plan and can afford to “waste” them on dumb stuff like twitter.  Second, I found a nice Twitter plugin for WordPress, so I don’t have to tell anyone, “hey, go to this other page to find more updates from me,” instead they will all just be aggregated here and posted on a daily basis.  Finally, as I prepare for my annual trek to the Northwoods for the hunt, it dawned on me that I can relay texts from my phone much faster than taking the time to dial up to the web @ Mom and Dad’s, wait for my page to load, write a post, etc., etc…. I think you get it.

Anyway, be on the lookout for the ‘tweets,’ at least while I’m in E.R., and if I suddenly find Twitter to be worthwhile, then hey– I guess I’ll need to upgrade my messaging plan again.

Things That Are True

So I have 2 days left on my vacation, then it’s back to the real world and really working.  A good thing that I can think of about going back: I did have to get caught up on all the little piddly shit that was sitting around on my desk before the vaykay started, so I’ll pretty much have a clean start on Wednesday.

But anyway– there are a few things that I’ve figured out over the last several days (some more serious than others):

  1. I could do very well with about a month off from work.  However, the week has shown me that I can get things accomplished if really put forth some effort.
  2. If I just wrote out everything that I have to talk about from those years being a kid in E.R., it would be an extensive memoir.  Who would have ever thought a person could say that about that place?  Certainly not me when I was living there…
  3. Having a maid would be great.  The number of household chores that pile up in a house of just one person is amazing.
  4. Even when you buy Oakley frames for your prescription glasses, they don’t include the hard case.  No joking.
  5. I haven’t watched a football game from start to finish since last year.  I know this is going to sound nuts, but I got so used to watching tons of baseball over the summer, a football game seems REEEALLY LONG.  I think the key comparison is the way the sports are televised.  The NFL, being such a TV-driven enterprise, has very frequent TV commercial breaks, and halftime takes a while…  It’s just a different sort of sport, I guess.
  6. Speaking of football, beating Charlie Frye means nothing.  Yes, there were a lot fewer penalties this week, but against that Seattle team, all you had to do was not shoot yourself in the foot.  Possibly losing two more defensive players isn’t good for the banged-up Packers…

Deeper Appreciation

When I was a kid, I was pretty active in the Cub/Boy Scouts for a number of years– I wanna say from 2nd grade (or maybe it was 1st?) up through the end of middle school (until I was maybe 14). At that point, I was a bit more interested in sports, and then in HS, I quickly got into the arts, but that’s really neither here or there…

The point is, while kids who grow up in the Northwoods have a unique opportunity to do all the outdoor Scouting activities that people think of first (the camping, hiking, swimming, boating), it is a double-edged sword. I wasn’t conscious of it back then, but I wonder if the accessibility of the outdoors and the wealth of time that I spent in the woods, around wildlife, on the lake, etc., made Scouting sort of blasé after a while.

Now that I’m an adult, I’m finding that I really enjoy the outdoors again. Michelle and I went on road trips the last two years to national parks out west, and we had a great time hiking, camping, horseback riding, and being around nature. We’ve also gone on a few whitewater rafting trips that we really enjoyed, and Michelle taught me how to ski (downhill). As I start to think about some getaway options for this summer, I’ve realized that I’m really anxious to see a number of other national parks (even though we won’t be able to make a big cross-country trip this year). I was saying to Kyle when we visited this past weekend, I really want to go to Grand Canyon National Park, Rocky Mountain, and Voyageurs. Add Isle Royale to that list, too.

I think that becoming an adult and realizing how precious your free time is the heaviest contributor to the change in attitude. When you’re a kid, it’s so easy to take things for granted. Hope that I have time to see and do all these things as time goes on…


Uploaded some more photos today.  I now have a galleries for Oshkosh, Eagle River, and Milwaukee, as well as for a few of the vacations I’ve taken in the last few years.  Take a look as you will.

Michelle and I were talking about it recently– I don’t think I ever actually put photos from our Glacier Nat’l Park trip on the web last summer.  I’m gonna work on those next, be watching for it in a few days…

In other breaking news this evening, I guess Tom Crean is leaving Marquette.  How bout them apples?

An Open Letter to My Candidate of Choice, Barack Obama

Dear Senator Obama,

During your candidacy, one goal I recall that you mentioned is getting high-speed Internet access to as much of the nation as possible.

Pleasepleasepleaseplease–for the love of all that is right and holy on this Earth–I really need you to get my folks the high-speed Interwebs.  After all these years, they are still on dial-up, and I could write all the stories on cnn.com myself in the time it takes that mother to load.

I mean, shit.