uh oh

May 9, 2012

I’m a little upset this morning. I’m just going to get this out there:

I sat on the toilet seat, and it broke.

Okay, it feels good to get that off my, er, chest.


yes, that’s a crack (ha)

I was just sitting there, minding my own business. I shifted a bit. And a crack like the sound of doom reverberated throughout the bathroom the way only sounds in a bathroom can. It was like a sonic boom.

Look, Strava doesn’t lie. I’ve been riding this year at roughly 5 times the quantity I was last year.

The scale doesn’t lie. I can now button the top button on my pants.

And yet.

in case you were wondering, yes, the crack goes all the way through

I will now buy a microwave large enough to fit me.

casual friday

May 7, 2012

Every Friday morning a group of really casual friends gathers at the mouth of American Fork Canyon to head to the summit at a leisurely, chatty pace, followed by a snack at the top, and a safe, easy downhill where we stay together and help each out with tips and warnings.

Good times.

I did not win. (There are two races, one to the top, and one to the bottom.)  But I did capture the view of the race to the top from the (way) back. And I captured the view of the race to the bottom (ha) from (near) the front. I need to adjust the camera angle a bit, as I am often depressed on the climb, and stare at the pavement, which those two announcer guys from Europe keep telling us means a rider is totally cooked.


The big boss man lives in Park City, and loves him some Park City trails. He grew tired of me n Ricky always bragging about our awesome Corner Canyon trail network, and demanded we put up or shut up.

So we put up. And while there was some mud that day, and not everything was open, I think we sufficiently made our point.

I guess it’s more of a tour of El Jefe’s butt. But, you get the point.

big pimpin

May 1, 2012

Bringing a Smile to Utah

National Smile Month is coming to Utah, as West Family Dental will be holding a special event to back the international campaign.

To show their support, the team from West Family Dental in Murray Utah, will be holding a ‘Best Smile in Utah’ contest from May 1 through May 30, 2012 that aims to put the smile into National Smile Month. By holding the contest on their facebook page, the team hope to raise awareness of how important oral health is. The grand prize is up to $4000 worth of free dental procedure(s) for the winner’s friend, family member, or themselves, plus a $250 gift card.

Dr West from West Family Dental said: “National Smile Month is an excellent opportunity to bring an element of fun to a serious issue.

“Good oral health is vital for a healthy smile as well as a healthy body, and we’ll be spreading that message at our facebook page via the contest.”

The Foundation’s Chief Executive Dr Nigel Carter said: “I’m delighted that West Family Dental has joined the many schools, colleges, health professionals and other dental practices in engaging with National Smile Month. It is a great reflection of local community spirit and an excellent way to promote good oral health.

“Taking place from May 1 to May 30, the campaign is an ideal opportunity to learn about oral health in a fun and positive way.

“By making an event as fun and imaginative as possible, we hope it will inspire more people to join in the fun than ever before while delivering the Foundation’s three key messages for good oral health of brush for two minutes twice a day with a fluoride toothpaste, cut down on how often you have sugary foods and drinks and visit the dentist regularly – as often as they recommend.”

For more information please visit www.danwestdmd.com, and/or their facebook page: facebook.com/bestsmileutah

they are not for eating

April 30, 2012

Yeah, I get it–eating bone marrow is what gave us our big brains, a couple million years ago. Whatever.

Unless I become a zombie or I’m trapped on a lifeboat in the middle of the ocean (with you), the stuff on the inside of bones is not for me.

Unless, you know, I’m sitting in a hip restaurant downtown with Kim and my father in law and his wife, and the menu actually fairly shouts “Hey, we offer bone marrow as a side dish!”

In that case, still no.

Unless someone at the table (Kim) dares me. Then, well, what are you gonna do?

Eat the marrow. I hear it’s good for my brain.

presentation is everything

seriously? it's like bone jelly

does NOT taste like chicken, but i can feel myself getting smarter

this pic really just to show how as my hair recedes, my nose grows. yay.

i hate norman doors

April 27, 2012

Tony, a UX designer here at work, introduced me to the concept of Norman Doors.

Norman Doors suck.

“You are a madman! When you stole that cow and you’re friend tried to make it with the cow. I wanna party with you cowboy.”

A nice photo, and a nicer caption, from MSNBC.com this morning.

Pyongyang refuses to let failed rocket launch dampen tone of festivities.

elden’s wilhelm scream

April 20, 2012

My long national nightmare is over.

Okay, I’m being dramatic. Well, someone is being dramatic. Maybe it’s not me.

We’ve all heard of Elden’s scream, right? I mean, I’ve known Elden for over 20 years now. I KNOW his scream. I’ve heard his scream. Lots and lots of times. Usually when he falls off his bike, of course,  but not always.

So, an article I read on Grantland recently piqued my interest, and I’ve done a bit of research, and now I know why Elden’s scream feels so archetypal.

Elden’s scream is the Wilhelm Scream.

For those of you who don’t want to click over, I’ll quote from the fount of all knowledge and every blessing, Wikipedia:

The Wilhelm scream is a film and television stock sound effect first used in 1951 for the film Distant Drums.The effect gained new popularity (its use often becoming an in-joke) after it was used in Star Wars, the Indiana Jones series, Disney cartoons and many other blockbuster films as well as television programs and video games.The scream is often used when someone is shot, falls from a great height, or is thrown from an explosion.

The sound is named for Private Wilhelm, a character in The Charge at Feather River, a 1953 western in which the character is shot with an arrow. This was believed to be the third movie to use the sound effect and its first use from the Warner Brothers stock sound library.

The sound effect originates from a series of sound effects recorded for the 1951 movie Distant Drums. In a scene from the film, soldiers are wading through a swamp in the Everglades, and one of them is bitten and dragged underwater by an alligator. The scream for that scene was recorded later in a single take, along with five other short pained screams, which were slated as “man getting bit by an alligator, and he screams.” The fifth scream was used for the soldier in the alligator scene—but the 4th, 5th, and 6th screams recorded in the session were also used earlier in the film—when three Indians are shot during a raid on a fort. Although takes 4 through 6 are the most recognizable, all of the screams are referred to as “Wilhelm”, by those in the sound community.

So, that’s a nice description of a fascinating piece of film esoterica. Which I love. I mean, really, I LOVE this stuff.

But back to Elden. I don’t have a recording of Elden’s scream (except in my head, where it’s on a constant loop in a corner of my brain). And maybe you haven’t heard it before either. But I can give you a short sweet example (I got tipped off to this in the Grantland article).

Did you hear the Wilhelm Scream in there?

Now imagine that, but louder, and interminable. Like a cat being tortured.

Now you hear what I hear.



not dead yet

April 16, 2012

I put away all the ski stuff right after Holden and I did Lone Peak. I mean, after all, this season is bumping up against the all time record for badness.

But we got like 18 inches last week. Gotta take advantage.

So, Tyler H. got all excited hearing the reports of last Winter’s bounty, and he went and bought BC gear this year. And then this year, um, sucked. And the one time I had him all set to go, and we got a big dump, the canyon closed.

And so. When we got 18 inches last week, well, it only seemed right to get Tyler and his new gear out.

Saturday was the day. Me, Ben, Wonder Twin Rob, and, of course, Tyler. (The kids were too tired to get up, so I met them for some nice resort powder a bit later on.)

We met at the mouth at six, hiking from the church around six thirty, two unreal shots in north facing Days, and the big return shot.

The shots in the back were uncut, deep, steep, and soft. The return shot had about 4 inches in a supportable crust which made for 100 foot schmear turns with the spray up and over the head.

Hey look, I have video of Tyler’s first big outing.

Oh, wait, I forgot my camera mount. Um. Whoops.

So here’s a short video of Tyler climbing to Flagstaff. I’m kind of like the dad who forgot to charge the camera battery for his kid’s first big game. Sorry Tyler. And sorry to you, dear reader.

Last night Ian had a friend over, and I showed them the video I had made of Ian riding Corner Canyon goodness.

The friend ooh’d and aah’d for a minute, declared that it looked dangerous, but very cool, and then asked if it was good exercise. That is, “do I need to ride like that to get buff, or can I run? What’s the program?”

Ian told him it was awesome for fitness. “Just look at my Dad” he said. “He’s got buff arms and totally ripped legs.” At which point I got dizzy from the buzz in my head.

And then he said “yeah, but it’s not so good for the middle parts, as you can see.”

I will now eat Nala’s poop.


We had a looooong day Saturday, and I didn’t get to enjoy the incredible weather, so Sunday, Ian and I decided to celebrate Easter by enjoying the the weather, the dirt, and life itself by enjoying a little Anne’s, Jacob’s, Ghost, Canyon, and some more Anne’s.

The good news? Ian rocks the bike. The bad news? If he’s going to keep rocking the bike, I’m going to have to get him his very own bike that fits.


it is what it is

April 6, 2012

Last year was a good winter. Lots of snow. Lots of great lines skied, all the way into August.

So, today, the avy forecast master, Bruce Tremper, said this:

We looked at snow numbers yesterday from the Alta Guard Station and found that this season has even less snow for this time of year than the previous record low snow season of 1976-77. We have a measly 283 inches so far and if we get less than 30 inches between now and the end of April, we will officially break the over-60-year record for the least amount of snow in a season. Wow! So if this seems like a horrible winter it’s because it IS.

I guess intrepid explorers could still find cool big lines to ski. I am more of a low hanging fruit kind of guy. So I think I’ll put away the skis. Go watch the Jacobs/Ghost downhill again. More of that sort of thing.

For example, I bought a new MTB saddle for the first time in like 6 years. See? I’m moving on.

Rick S. started the Wednesday morning Corner Canyon rides for the year, and just me n Ricky showed up (well, Rick S. too).

We met at the top of Coffee Grinder (behind the condos at the top of Suncrest), went down to the saddle, headed up to Jacobs, then hit Jacobs and strung it together down Ghost (the no-pause Jacobs/Ghost transition is totally the way to go), headed up Canyon to the Peak View TH, and then went down Rush, turned and went straight up Canyon, up Coffee Grinder, and then home. Yes, that was all one sentence. And it came to pass. Whew.

Anyway. The dirt was good today my friends. So, so good. It’s all open. It’s all good.

Also, this video is long, in order to accomodate the uncut shot of the Jacobs/Ghost downhill. Cuz I love the Jacobs/Ghost downhill about as much as any downhill in the world. Really.

But the point is, it’s long. I understand if it’s too long for you. Sometimes it’s all about me.


for leslie

March 31, 2012

For Leslie.

it’s not just me

March 29, 2012

Usually, it’s just me. I have stuff that bounces around in my head that only bother me. Like, I’m pretty sure nobody else was bothered by the crooked golf mat in the new bathroom. And maybe nobody was bothered by the gum (though they were bothered by the stream).

Well, I was in my boss’s office yesterday, and as I looked out the window at the adjacent building, something immediately caught my eye and kept me from focusing on our conversation for a while. When he called me out for not paying attention, I looked over and said “so, does that window over there bother you?”

He immediately said “yes, I thought I was the only one.”

I guess we all live alone in our heads. But now I’m not the only one.

Or maybe it’s just us. Is it just us?


March 27, 2012

I have a few regular gimmicks for my blog. You know, ski or bike video, bathroom conundrums, friday news roundup. All that. Here’s kind of a new one, ripped off from SNL: Really? As in, you really did that? Or, you just pushed the dog into the tub, while I was in it–Really?

Not too long ago, at a basketball game, I was using a urinal (okay, I hate the word urinal. I don’t hate it as much as I hate the word nostril, or even ointment, but I hate it. A lot.) adjacent to the urinal Holden was using. Holden spit his gum into the, er, toilet. I gave him a small lecture about how someone was going to have to fish that gum out of there. Someone working for minimum wage who already hated his job was going to have to reach in and grab his gum–already an unpleasant task without the whole “urinal” thing.

So, I work in a fairly nice facility. In fact, here’s a picture of the outside:

I’m pretty sure that every single person working in this building is an adult. That is, old enough to know better.

So, in a class A office space, with waterless urinals with spiffy (albeit often crooked) golf mats, who in the Hell spits gum into the urinal?


show me the feet

March 22, 2012

One of the most awkward things you can do in a public bathroom (apart from that other list of things you should never under any circumstances ever do in a public OR private bathroom) is try to enter a stall that is occupied.

I wish our fancy new bathrooms had stall doors with little “occupado” indicators. They don’t. THEY DON’T.

And, in fact, our stalls are nice. And, per usual, the big stall is the nicest. \

What I am not happy about is the design flaw in our bathroom that prevents me from knowing, short of sending a trial balloon over the wall, or using a camera or mirror on the end of a stick, or standing with my ear to the door (see list of things to never do in a public bathroom), for finding out if the stall is occupied.

A bathroom should be designed so that you can see feet.

Not like this:

Getting closer and leaning back into the sink portion of the counter does not help:

Yes, I did the whole “try to open the door, get denied, mumble apologies, and shuffle to the far stall (never the adjacent because the shame is now too great for that) thing.

I’m open to suggestions.

gardening at night

March 19, 2012

I have taken more (much more) than a fair share of heat for eating during the night.

Not just for eating after dark. For waking up in the middle of the night, going downstairs, and eating. Then going back to bed.

Well, I’m feeling like thanking God almighty, because I’m also feeling a little vindicated.

According to Ekirch‘s argument, typically individuals slept in two distinct phases, bridged by an intervening period of wakefulness of up to an hour or more. Peasant couples, who were often too tired after field labor to do much more than eat and go to sleep, awakened later to have sex [or, if their partner was not a segment sleeper, to eat Oreos]. People also used this time to pray and reflect,and to interpret dreams, which were more vivid at that hour than upon waking in the morning. This was also a favorite time for scholars and poets to write uninterrupted, whereas still others visited neighbors, or engaged in petty crime.

The human circadian rhythm regulates the human sleep-wake cycle of wakefulness during the day and sleep at night. Ekirch suggests that it is due to the modern use of electric lighting that most modern humans do not practice segmented sleep, which is a concern for some scientists.

I will now return to my normally scheduled programming of nocturnal eating of Oreos. Because I’m pretty sure that’s really what Ekirch was getting at.

friday news roundup #1

March 16, 2012

I’m not afraid to admit it, I like to listen to Diane Rehm‘s Friday News Roundup. Because stuff happens during the week that’s too important to wait for the Sunday talk shows.

I’m going to start doing a Friday roundup. Here  you go:

Two new websites that are on my daily visit list because they are so awesome I can’t wait for the Sunday talk shows.

Least Helpful Reviews, brought to you buy the same guy who does my next entry. Essentially, highlighting Amazon reviews of books by people who are too stupid to be alive. A sample from someone reviewing the BOOK One Flew Over the Cukoo’s Nest:

This book is verbatim the movie. I wasn’t impressed. The main character was the Indian, not Randle Patrick McMurphy. I think the movie was great, and the book was too predictable. Maybe I should use another word other than predictable. The book was predictable because I saw the movie before reading the book.

Literally Unbelievable, a website that aggregates posts and comments from Facebook that take articles published in The Onion as actual news reporting. Here is a nice sample from someone who might need a sharp blow to the head:

Scientists successfully teach gorilla it will die someday.

C complains: Our tax dollars at work

T enlightens: So what is the purpose of that? What “crippling fear of impending death” are they talking about? I’m not afraid of dying. I’ve had Out of Body Experiences, and Astral Projected, so I KNOW we exist outside of this body and plane.

I had more, but it’ll have to wait for the Sunday talk shows. Because I forget what eight was for.

Oh, and this postscript for anybody who claims Utah drivers suck so irredeemably badly that they can’t be, er, redeemed. Show me the money (that is, show me the data. Don’t give me anecdotes. I want actual data.)

linking up

March 14, 2012

I’m not much of a social networker, I’m more of a Hold Forther.

But I have joined the ranks of those who Link inwardly. Because I want a job as much as the next guy. (I have one presently, but you never know.)

Well, as a result of being linked, I get link requests on a pretty regular basis. And you know, requests for linkage seem to have rules, kind of like calling a date back.

These are my rules:

If a friend sends a link request, you just accept it in your email, and forget about it–it’s just link building. No big deal.

If a neighbor or acquaintance attempts a link, you look at the email, ignore it for a day, then open the request and accept it. Because you’re too important to just accept out of hand. Unless it’s your boss. Then you accept immediately.

And if someone you work with, but not directly, who is clearly just building a network, links you, you ignore it for at least a couple days, then open it, then ignore it for another couple days, then finally accept it. You don’t want to look easy.

I’m not sure what the protocol is on someone who recently left your place of employment (voluntarily or involuntarily–although maybe they have different rules?). Now you’re in the driver seat, but still, they need you. But do you need them? You might? Maybe it’s a game time decision.

And if someone you don’t know pings you, just delete the email.

Unless you’re out of work. Then accept everything.