Saturday, April 30, 2016

Thoughts on the Black & Gold Game

The girls and I just got back from Army's Spring Scrimmage, and as long as I've got a few minutes, I'd like to jot down my thoughts before I forget what I saw.  I should note that we only stayed through three quarters.  I wanted to watch Ahmad Bradshaw's last possession, but we just didn't have time.  The girls are attending the local junior high school production of Beauty and the Beast, so we had to leave early to give everyone a chance to decompress and eat before heading back out.

We left the house a little after nine, which I thought would be plenty early.  With no traffic, I live about seventy-five minutes from the Academy.  Unfortunately for us, however, the NY State Department of Transportation failed to deconflict their Tappan Zee Bridge roadwork with Army's Athletic Department, resulting in a massive traffic jam that significantly delayed us getting the stadium.  What's worse is that everyone was a little cranky by the time we got there.  This was not a particularly auspicious start to an afternoon with two girls who really only understand the very basics of football.

Saturday Starters: Glorious Victory & Football Notes...


This game was glorious.  It started at 4:30, and I followed the first three quarters on Twitter via  @ArmyWP_MLax.  The Black Knights went up by two early and held the Mids scoreless through the first half.

I got home just as the fourth quarter started.  What had been a close game with a narrow Army lead quickly turned into a route.

Friday, April 29, 2016

5 Things on a Friday: Trump v. Clinton is your Main Event

Happy Friday, folks!
I’d like to apologize in advance for all the politics this week, but I don’t think there’s any way around it.  The week’s events have made our main event matchup pretty clear in the presidential race, and for better or worse, this leaves us with a lot to talk about.
For what it’s worth, I have an obvious rooting interest that I’m not trying particularly hard to hide.  I doubt I could hide it, regardless.  Still, I realize that I’m not changing any minds here.  Articles below are presented because I think they are interesting or relevant, not because they prove my point.
Whatever my point is, it’s either self-evident or it’s not.  We’ve learned over the course of this cycle that trying to argue on the basis of rationality is simply not worth the effort.  Folks believe what they believe, and if this sometimes infuriates me, it’s also true that we all still need to find a way to live together.  I’m not always particularly good at that, but I’m hoping to change the tone a little this week and be a little more dispassionate.  Whether that effort will be successful or not is an open question.  

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Warning Shots

I let myself get dragged into a political slapfight on Facebook yesterday, and as always, it was a huge mistake.  I have to admit that what I said was particularly nasty, calling Trump supporters "the self-selecting bottom third of American society."

As you can imagine, they didn't like that much.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Army Football Preview: What to Watch in the Spring Game

This post begins our pre-summer look at Army Football’s 2016 season.  We’ll spend the next few weeks previewing the team’s 2016 season, add Michie Stadium to the NYC and the Area series, and run down the schedule to try to make some predictions going forward.  Army’s Spring Game is this Saturday, so we start with that:
What to Watch in the Spring Game?

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

The Adventures of Sneax & Elaina Emboo (Part 8)

Our Story So Far:
Sneakatara Boatman was abandoned as a child by parents she never knew.  Life in the orphanage was tough for a tiny girl with few ways to defend herself, so she lit out as soon as she was able.  But the streets of Docks District are no safer than life was at the orphanage, and now the loathsome street criminal Russitan Lassiter has Sneax at his mercy.

Elaina Emboo is a rich girl from a merchant family, but her controlling father already has her entire life mapped out.  Elaina envies Sneax's freedom without truly understanding its costs.  Still, she agree to help when Sneax asks her to head up to the Old Church to meet with Lassiter.  


Sneax and Elaina get the scare of their lives when they realize that Lassiter has an appointment with Draks, the fire elf, that he and Draks are working to import an illegal shipment of DISTILLED TIGER ESSENCE into Wanderhaven.  But when that shipment goes missing?


That's when things start getting crazy...


Monday, April 25, 2016

Quassy Amusement Park

Sally and I talked about this last night, and neither of us is entirely sure that Quassy Amusement Park belongs as part of the NYC and the Area series.  But I took these pictures, so...

Quassy sits on the banks of Lake Quassapaug in Middlebury, Connecticut, not far from Waterbury.  It's about forty-five minutes north of our house in Stratford, which ought to put it at something like two and a half hours outside of Manhattan, depending on traffic.  It seems unlikely in the extreme that someone visiting New York would make time for Quassy, and folks living in Connecticut must surely already know about the place, but if you're wondering, the easiest ways to get to there are via I-84 or up CT Route 8 from I-95 or CT 15.  Middlebury is itself a quaint little New England town, complete with a six-mile paved bike path, so if you've never been, I will heartily recommend it.  However, I don't know that you would necessarily cross state lines just for the purpose of visiting Quassy Amusement Park.

Saturday, April 23, 2016

The Guggenheim

The Guggenheim is a modern-art museum located on the Upper East Side in Manhattan, towards the southern end of Museum Mile.  The museum itself sits at 88th and 5th Ave, just south of the Cooper Hewitt Museum of Design and just a few blocks north of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Koreatown, Manhattan

My last duty station with the Army was Camp Garryowen in the Republic of Korea.  I didn't love my time there, but there were certainly good things about it, and over the years, I've come to think of that time as a blessing.  Compared to some other possibilities, Korea offered an interesting culture in a fairly safe operating environment alongside an ostensibly important real-world mission.  Still, my favorite times had nothing to do with my service in the United States Cavalry.  What I remember most is heading to the local town of Munson with the squadron's other staff captains, looking for trouble--or at least a decent place to get Korean barbecue.  These were, by far, my favorite moments overseas.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

The Adventures of Sneax & Elaina Emboo (Part 7)

Our Story So Far:
Sneakatara Boatman was abandoned as a child by parents she never knew.  Life in the orphanage was tough for a tiny girl with few ways to defend herself, so she lit out as soon as she was able.  But the streets of Docks District are no safer than life was at the orphanage, and now the loathsome street criminal Russitan Lassiter has Sneax at his mercy.

Elaina Emboo is a rich girl from a merchant family, but her controlling father already has her entire life mapped out.  Elaina envies Sneax's freedom without truly understanding its costs.  Still, she agree to help when Sneax asks her to head up to the Old Church to meet with Lassiter.  


Sneax and Elaina get the scare of their lives when they realize that Lassiter has an appointment with Draks, the fire elf, that he and Draks are working to import an illegal shipment of DISTILLED TIGER ESSENCE into Wanderhaven.  But when that shipment goes missing?


That's when things start getting crazy...


Monday, April 18, 2016

Museum of the City of New York

The Museum of the City of New York is located at the north end of the so-called Museum Mile, a mile-long stretch of 5th Avenue that runs from the Metropolitan Museum of Art at 82nd to El Museo del Barrio at 104th.  The MCNY itself is located at 103rd Street, accessible by the M1 bus, the 123 subway line, or via short walk from the Harlem 125th Street Metro North train station.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Army-Navy Men's Lacrosse

Hannah and I attended yesterday's game, and it was a barn-burner.  #9 Navy pulled out the win in overtime over #20 Army, but the game was super-exciting, and Army certainly had every opportunity.

Friday, April 15, 2016

5 Things on a Friday: First Draft = Final Copy

Sometimes the best laid plans go awry.  This is one of those times; hence today’s late, short “5 Things”.  Hopefully it’ll still be worth your time.
Me and Hannah on the way into the City.
I’m lucky to be off today.  Sally, the girls, and I are headed into Manhattan for a day of touring.  So I’ve got from now until we get into Harlem to get this column together.  Wish me luck.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

The Adventures of Sneax & Elaina Emboo (Part 6)

Our Story So Far:
Sneakatara Boatman was abandoned as a child by parents she never knew.  Life in the orphanage was tough for a tiny girl with few ways to defend herself, so she lit out as soon as she was able.  But the streets of Docks District are no safer than life was at the orphanage, and now the loathsome street criminal Russitan Lassiter has Sneax at his mercy.

Elaina Emboo is a rich girl from a merchant family, but her controlling father already has her entire life mapped out.  Elaina envies Sneax's freedom without truly understanding its costs.  Still, she agree to help when Sneax asks her to head up to the Old Church to meet with Lassiter.  


Sneax and Elaina get the scare of their lives when they realize that Lassiter has an appointment with Draks, the fire elf.  


Then things start getting crazy...


Monday, April 11, 2016

Training Log: 4/4 to 4/10 (Week 2)

After three weeks of lighter work--done both out of a desire to cut back and avoid illness and also of necessity due to events in my personal and professional lives--I tried to get back in the saddle this week.  I've been averaging between 60 and 70 points over the past few weeks, which is fine on a temporary basis, but it's not going to get me running or swimming any faster.  I've also been in the gym consistently, and that's good, but when added to the lack of aerobic work, it has me heavier than I'd prefer to be.  Thus, one of my goals this week was to get back to building my aerobic base while maintaining momentum in the gym.
Swim, Bike, Run
Complicating all of this, I was in Albany all week on business.  I got zero miles of commute riding done and wound up missing my Friday run as well.  Still, I got something done, so as Week 1's go, I guess I'll take it.

Sunday, April 10, 2016

The Rebranding is Working

I wore my new Army t-shirt on today's long run.  It's black with Army Athletics' new Athena shield logo and the word "Army" stenciled in big gold letters across the upper chest.  Not "Army West Point", just "Army".

The Athena Shield is Army Athletics' new logo.
I got saluted--twice!

Friday, April 8, 2016

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

The Adventures of Sneax & Elaina Emboo (Part 5)

Our Story So Far:
Sneakatara Boatman was abandoned as a child by parents she never knew.  Life in the orphanage was tough for a tiny girl with few ways to defend herself, so she lit out as soon as she was able.  But the streets of Docks District are no safer than life was at the orphanage, and now the loathsome street criminal Russitan Lassiter has Sneax at his mercy.

Elaina Emboo is a rich girl from a merchant family, but her controlling father already has her entire life mapped out.  Elaina envies Sneax's freedom without truly understanding its costs.  Still, she agree to help when Sneax asks her to head up to the Old Church to meet with Lassiter.  

Sneax and Elaina get the scare of their lives when they realize that Lassiter has an appointment with Draks, the fire elf.  

Then things start getting crazy...

Monday, April 4, 2016

Movie Review: Batman vs. Superman

I finally took the girls to see Batman vs. Superman on Saturday.  For the purposes of this review, I’m assuming that you’ve seen the movie if you are at all interested in seeing it, so this write-up contains many spoilers.  Judging by the drop-off in attendance numbers from Week 1 to Week 2, it seems safe to say that you’ve either seen the movie or don’t care to see it.  That’s fine.
Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice
*Spoilers after the jump*

Friday, April 1, 2016

5 Things on a Friday: Politics as Protection Racket

I realize that your minds are made up.  I keep writing about this year's presidential race because I think it's important, but trust me, I am well aware of the reality.  You know what youre doing.  Your minds are set.  You know who you're voting for, and nothing I do or say is going to change that.

That's okay.  I get that I'm screaming into the wind.  That doesn't mean I can stop; it means that I know I'm wasting my time.

You get the government you deserve in a democracy, folks.  That right there is the plain truth.