Friday, July 23, 2004

The Buff!

I found my Appalachian Trail buff! This is a happy, happy event. I leave for the Hike today. Tomorrow about this time, I'll be almost to the trail.

Saying goodbye to my wife today was difficult. I am really going to miss her. We have really re-connected over the last year. She's my rock and I depend on her. I wish she were interested in hiking so she could join me, but I have learned to accept our differences. She is who she is and I am lucky to have her in my life. I am also going to miss my kids so much. My littlest one will probably seem completely different when I get back - they change so quickly in the first year. And I'm going to miss my older daughter's soccer game. That makes me sad.

But still, I am excited about returning to the Trail. And I'm excited to be hiking with my brothers and my sister. It's us against the mountains. I can't wait.

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

Moose Drool

So I learned something new today. There's a beer called Moose Drool. I learned of this taste delight at this Blog:

My latest thing is checking out other blogs. There's a helluva lot of bloggers out there. The witty and interesting ones I bookmark. I like Zesmerelda's. It's humorous. As I find new and interesting blogs, I'll post about 'em.

So anyway, Moose Drool. Who in the world thought this would be a good name for a beer. Of course, I can't say that I care all that much as I can't stand beer. I know, I know. I've just never had "good" beer, right? It all tastes like, well, piss to me. I'll stick with the so called girly drinks. They taste better and I am more than secure enough in my masculinity to order 'em. Even if they do come with umbrellas and fruit. (Seriously, bartenders if a guy orders a girly drink, just assume he doesn't want the umbrellas, okay?)

Actually, my drink of choice is an Amaretto Sour. The only problem with them is there's often too little alcohol to even get buzzed. But at least it's an enjoyable drink.

Star Trek is here!

So my Dad's colonoscopy showed nothing. Which is good and bad. We'd like to know what is wrong with him. You don't lose that much blood without something going on. Tomorrow they're going to perform a new test. I am kind of blown away by it. Apparently, Dad will swallow a pill. Inside of the pill is a camera. The camera will take pictures of his insides and then send those pictures to some sort of receiver/computer thing. I have no idea what happens to the camera. I assume it leaves the body in the way you'd expect. I doubt they're reusable...

Anyway, I had no idea our medical technology had progressed so far! Soon we'll have those things Dr. McCoy used to pass over a red shirt's leg and heal his bones. Or maybe that was the blue shirts. The red shirts always died, right?

Tuesday, July 20, 2004

Not forever young

When did my Dad get old? He's having some serious medical problems right now and I'm worried. He's always been a strong guy, someone who towered over my life. He started as a salesman and slowly worked his way up the ladder until he became a Vice President and a leader in his field. He held the Presidency of a major organization in his industry. Because of his business acumen, he was invited to join the board of directors of a company. His sole responsibility was to show up for meetings and offer his opinion. For this, he was paid a helluva lot of money. He always provided for us. And nowadays, he's such a good grampa. Watching him play with Rachel just makes me smile so much.

He's only 65. That's retirement age. He's supposed to have a lot of years of relaxation ahead of him. (He retired last year.) He just looked so thin when I saw him a few days ago.

And he's so far away. I wish I could be there and visit him in the hospital, but I have two kids and we're 3 1/2 hours away. All I can do is wait and hope for the best. The rest of my family lives close by and I feel so cut off. At least he has a lot of people around for support.

I just want to know when my Dad got old.

Monday, July 19, 2004

Let's talk about THIS! and THIS! and THIS too!

A different subject...

You ever notice that sometimes people change what was agreed upon so completely in their head that they end up believing their own nonsense? I have a friend like that. I think back to what we talked about and it's just completely different than what is being said now. But I've also come to the realization that there's no point in talking about it. When we have talked in the past, we've gotten on the same page, and then later my friend turns to a different page. So yeah. What's the point?

New subject...

The first time my wife and I became parents, we had a rough time of it. Things are so different this time. What's interesting to me is that we could have fallen into the same hole we did the first time, but we didn't. The risk was there, and we avoided it. We work very hard on communication . We don't let things simmer anymore. We understand each other's needs and work hard to fulfill them. It just goes to show that you should never rest in a marraige. It's work, but it's rewarding work. I feel very lucky.

And one more subject...

Texas Hold 'Em. I am addicted. I play at It's a great game. I am tempted to wager some real money, but so far have not had the nerve.

Nice people on the internet

So the Appalachian Trail hike starts this Saturday. I can't find my map! Ahhh! I need the map. Okay, I suppose I don't need it, as the trail is really well marked with white blazes, but still. I like to know the elevations. I like to know what Gap is coming next. I like my map!

So I went to the Appalachian Trail Conference website to order a new map. And they're CLOSED! They're moving to a new location or some such nonsense and they're not taking any orders this week.

So I revved up Google and started searching. Found the map on Ebay, but I'd have to buy the book too and that costs $22 or so. I just want the map. Finally I thought of, this really great Appalachian Trail site. I posted my dilemma there and not an hour later I received an email from a fellow hiker offering to send me his map. There are nice people on the internet.

Thursday, July 15, 2004

Hiking soon!

I will be returning to the Appalachian Trail very soon.

I cannot wait. I'm returning to North Carolina, site of the terrible rainstorm, the massive blister and the glory that is Albert Mountain. We'll pick up right where we left off and hike about 50 miles or so. This year, in addition to my brother John, my other brother Jim and my sister Jane are attempting the hike too. Only my brother Dave won't be able to join us. His wife just had a baby, so he is needed at home. Hopefully, next year, we'll make a full family affair. In any case, I am really looking forward to spending time with Jane, Jim and John. Since I live 3 and a half hours away from them, I don't see them as much as I'd like and when I do, it's at a family party and there's not a lot of time to really talk about things. This will give us all an opportunity to connect as adults.

And then there's the challenge of the hiking itself. I am a little worried about my siblings, Jane and Jim. Jim hasn't done much training at all. Jane has done some, but not a lot. I don't think either of them realizes just how physically challenging this is going to be. I didn't get it before my first time. Like John said, hopefully they won't look at us after four miles of hiking and say "What the hell did you get us into?!"

I am mostly ready in terms of equipment. I need to pick up a sleeping mat and some moleskin. (No blister is taking me down this year!) I am making my own trail mix with nuts, Chex cereal, dried fruit and M&Ms. I have to divide that into bags still.

And I can't find my Appalachian Trail buff! I have my Survivor one, which is good, but I need the Appalachian Trail one! I am going to the Trail. I must have my buff. I will tear this place apart until I find it...

Gimme that baby!

It's definite - I am going to direct The Play about the Baby early next year. I cannot wait.

The main idea is expressed quite straightforwardly by the character called "Man": "If you have no wounds how can you know if you're alive? If you have no scar how do you know who you are? Have been? Can ever be?"

That’s what we’re talking about here. How tragedy defines humanity. People are not real until they’ve suffered. Until their innocence has been lost, they are just children, no matter what their physical age may be. Albee chooses to use the single worst personal tragedy one can experience – the loss of one’s child – to push his point home. At the end of the play, the Boy and Girl attempt to deal with the loss by saying that the baby never existed, but that does not work. According to Albee, the Boy and Girl "realize they cannot take the pain and loss of having a baby, so it ceases to be real." The author's thesis is that reality is determined by our need. However, no matter how hard they attempt to shape reality to their need, the fact is they can still hear it crying – they know the baby was real and the loss cannot be ignored.

Awakening is the important action of this play. The Boy and the Girl both wake up by the end. They have been profoundly changed by the experience. The catalyst for that change is the Man and the Woman. Those two are almost vaudevillian and I’ll probably direct the actors that direction. As an absurdist play, it’s not meant to be real. The action is absurd; the characters, the emotions, the awakening, the growth are all very real.

My Survivor blog has the latest news and speculation as well as some spoiling about the show.
About Me

Name: Matt
Location: Coralville, IA
I am a Dad and a Husband. An Actor. An Administrator. A Hiker. A Writer. Probably a bunch of other things too. Read my blog and you'll find out more.
Dreams from My Father: A Story of Race and Inheritance by Barack Obama

Listed on Blogwise
Listed on BlogShares
Weblog Commenting and Trackback by
Who Links Here