Oh, and supermarkets sell booze in Cali, and it's cheap. Cool. And Courtney and I stopped in at Trader Joe's the other day. Apparantly there's this winery where the owner got a divorce, and his wife gets 1/2 of the profits for this year, so you can get quite good wine for $2 a bottle. I'm going to get a case before I leave.
Everyone is excited about the engagement, which makes things a lot of fun. I guess that's about all the excitement for now. Oh, and here's what the ring looks like:
The details: I proposed on the beach on a beautiful December day. No date is set yet, but the wedding will be sometime during the summer of '07 (after my first year of law school). All of the parents are excited, and Courtney and I have been trying out new words like "fiancee" and "engagement." Wow.
Fiji was fun, low key, but fun. For three days I basically did nothing but lay on the beach, broken up by snorkeling occasionally, which was like snorkeling in some doctor's fish tank. Pretty cool stuff.
I'm with Courtney for three weeks (yay!) in orange county. I'm trying to find some little job to make some money while I'm here, but nothing has been forthcoming yet. Anyone wanna pay me to do something?
Anyway, I'm killing time in Auckland now, waiting for my flight to leave in a mere 7 hours. I have my hammock with me though, so maybe I'll just go find a shady spot and have a nap, since I only snatched 3 or 4 hours of sleep in the airport last night.
Anyway, I'm finally starting to leapfrog my way back home.
Abel Tasman was amzing, great weather, great scenery, great food, great paddling, great everything. Seals swam under our boats and we ate fresh mussles as we watched the swells from a golden beach. Amazing stuff.
Im in Arthurs Pass right now; just returned from a tough 2 day hike. The first day was an amazing crossing over an alpine pass and then down into a river valley, but then yesterday we covered about 17 miles in about 9 and 1/2 hours, and with a wounded knee to boot. It was a long day.
Today is a rest day in AP, then its off to Christchurch tomorrow, then to sunny Fiji, before finally getting back to Courtney in LA in less than a week. Crazy stuff.
Tomorrow it's off to Abel Tasman National Park for three days of sea kayaking. Yay for adventures.
The past week has been comprised solely of trying to figure out what the hell to do with all of the hours of my day. I'd go travel for a bit, but I don't want to go on my own very bad and I really can't afford it, what with all of the other goings on.
Granted, I've gotten some work done, and there are a few loose ends that could do with some tying, but I could have happily left palmy a week ago if it wasn't for my last stupid freaking exam.
I hate those.
May the saddest of your tommorows be happier than the happiest of your yesterdays
"Heres to the nights we can't remember, with the friends we'll never forget"
Champagne for my real friends. Real pain for my sham friends.
From the Royal Navy:
Wednesday: "Ourselves and no one like us."
Thursday: "A bloody war and a quick promotion"
Friday: "A willing foe and searoom."
(for a wedding):
To the new couple.
Never sweat the petty things.
But always pet the sweaty things.
"People will hate you,
But someday, I assure you, they will die."
Here's to our noble selves, there's so few of us left
Here's to the corkscrew - a useful key to unlock the storehouse of wit, the treasury of laughter, the front door of fellowship, and the gate of pleasant folly.
"We might not get what we want
we might not get what we need
But God help us if we ever get what we deserve"
May your family stop askin' why you drink and start askin' if you're thirsty.
here's to ol' grandad, a fine ol' gent
when it's my time to go, i want to go as he went
he died in his sleep, dreaming of places afar
not yelling and screaming, like the folks in his car
Anyway, feel free to continue going about your day now.
Under instructions from Salisbury, the Attorney General lay principal responsibility on the Jesuits, before describing the traditional punishment for traitors: hanging, drawing and quartering. They would be hanged until half-dead, upon which their genitals would be cut off and burned in front of them. Still alive, their bowels and heart would be removed. Finally they would be decapitated and dismembered; their body parts would be publicly displayed, eaten by the birds as they decomposed.
The Gates of Haast. Some of the drops are runnable. This one is not.
Doubtful Sound, named because Cook thought that if he sailed in it was doubtful that he could make it out again.
Another shot of Doubtful.
The view over Queenstown. Classy place, that.
The first time I was through Christchurch I got to see the Botanical Gardens, but because I got there too early I didn't get to see inside the Bonsai house. It was pretty cool.
I'm done by 12:30 every day, leaving plenty of boating time. Yippie!
I think I may have a new favorite song. It's by a little celtic band called "The Pubcrawlers." It's called The Last Saskatchewan Pirate. Lyrics for your enjoyment:
Well I used to be a farmer and I made a living fine
I had a little stretch of land along the CP line
But times went by and though I tried, the money wasn't there
And bankers came and took my land and told me "fair is fair"
I looked for every kind of job, the answer always no
"Hire you now?" they'd always laugh, "we just let twenty go!"
The government they promised me a measly little sum
But I've got too much pride to end up just another bum
Then I thought, who gives a damn if all the jobs are gone?
I'm gonna be a PIRATE on the river Saskatchewan
Cause it's a heave (ho!) hi (ho!) comin' down the plains
Stealin' wheat and barley and all the other grains
It's a ho (hey!) hi (hey!) farmers bar yer doors
When ya see the Jolly Roger on Regina's mighty shores
Well, you'd think the local farmers would know that I'm at large
But just the other day I found an unprotected barge
I snuck up right behind them and they were none the wiser,
I rammed their ship and sank it and I stole their fertilizer!
A bridge outside of Moosejaw spans a mighty river
Farmers cross in so much fear their stomachs are a-quiver
Cause they know that TRACTOR JACK is hiding in the bay
I'll jump the bridge and knock them cold and sail off with their hay!
Well, Mountie Bob he chased me, he was always at my throat
He'd follow on the shoreline cause he didn't own a boat
But the cutbacks were a-coming and the Mountie lost his job
And now he's sailing with us, and we call him Salty Bob!
A swingin' sword, a skull and bones and pleasant company
I never pay my income tax and screw the GST (SCREW IT)
Prince Albert down to Saskatoon I'm the terror of the seas
If you wanna reach the co-op, boy, you gotta get by me!
Well, Pirate life's appealing but you just don't find it here,
I've heard that in Alberta there's a band of buccaneers
They roam the Athabaska and sail to Fort McKay
And you're gonna loose your stetson if you have to pass their way!
Well, winter is a-comin' and a chill is in the breeze
My Pirate days are over once the river starts to freeze
I'll be back in springtime but now I have to go
I hear there's lots of plundering down in New Mexico!
I've been traveling the south island with my parents for the past few days; so far we've made it to queenstown. The highlights have included: buying pants that will last me the rest of my life, driving off-road go-karts with my dad, walking through a bonsai house, parent-financed beer and wine, seeing a few paddlers run Nevis Bluff, a Class V+ monster, staying in wonderful accomidation, and wandering wonderful Queenstown.
It's been a good time, and the mode of travel is much different than the bus/hostel/on-the-cheap style that I've become acostomed to.
Oh, watched a Stephen Segal movie last night, "Submereged." Wow. So terrible. Running-commentary, MST 3000-esque bad. Dr. Strangelove-style special effects. Terrorists. Kung-fu. Wow.
It's strange that the semester is over in two weeks. Less than two months and I'm back in LA with Courtney. It feels like quite a while since I left the States, but the last month or so has just blown by.
Right. Back to Organizational Communication.
I've been setting routes down at the Massey wall, which has been fun. I'm actually getting some work done as well, which I suppose is a good thing.
Oh, and I had home fries for breakfast this morning. Yum.
Other then that things are moving right along over here; good kayaking trip this past weekend and only two more months 'til I head home. Crazy stuff.
Time to prepare for battle...
This weekend it looks like I'll get some paddling in as well, so I'll keep you all posted (almost typed ya'll just then).
Meeting some good people, including some Americans, Aussies, a Chilean, an Austrian, etc.
Hitchhiking for the first time.
A great ferry ride; felt more like a cruise than a ferry.
A couple good nights out on the town. One night we were pub hopping and most places were playing bad hip-hop, but one place had a cover band that played some Blink-182 covers. I skanked so hard I kneed myself in the nose. I have a bruise to prove it.
Missing a bus but having things work out for the better for it.
Reading in my tent. Yay.
Having a kitchen and living room near my tent under a big chockstone, so they were dry even when it was raining.
My wonderful (and slightly illegal) campsite.
An actual sunny day. A rarity, while I was there.
On the bright side, I am looking forward to the climbing trip down to Christchurch; should be quite the adventure.
"I like to fill my tub up with water, then turn the shower on and act like I'm in a submarine that's been hit.
god, i'm a loser"
and one more:
When I was five, my older brother accidently broke our teacup poodle's neck by spanking it off of the couch.
The next day, the entire family rushed to the pound and replaced it with a used wiener dog.
I was so happy. I played with our new dog for hours, until it crawled underneath the coffee table totally exhausted.
Like a midget army soldier, I crawed in after him and began to smile at him directly in the face.
Apparently, the little wiener didn't like that too much and quickly began to use my nose as a chew toy. I screamed so loud, our dog had a heart attack and died later that evening. I don't even think we had time to name him.
2 dogs in 2 days. I just love dogs.
1) Waves look a lot bigger when you're paddling into them than they do from up on the boardwalk
2) The whitewash from a broken wave can be over your head
3) 9ft waves are HUGE
4) Being nice to the hostel staff can get you far
5) Drunken rugby players will take your dry top, forcing you to chase around the hostel and miss your early-morning tide
6) Offshore winds will try to push your boat out into the ocean
7) Breaking 9-footers are powerful enough to implode your skirt and dump you end-over-end onto your head
8) If you lose your contact lens on a windy beach you will never, ever find it.
9) It's possible to transport your 6ft kayak by bus and sweet-talk the driver into not charging you for it
10) If you have a 40lb boat and a 60lb pack full of wet paddling gear, you shouldn't opt to hike the couple miles home instead of calling your flatmates. Straping the kayak to the pack won't work. It will still be heavy. You will be sore the next morning. Trust me.
It was quite the weekend.
I just read a story on boatertalk.com about a death on the Salmon river and this, combined with the worries of my family and girlfriend about my swim last weekend, made me reflect a bit on kayaking. Most of this unfolded in a conversation with Courtney, though the boatertalk article prompted me to work it over a bit more.
The more I think about it the more I've affirmed my decision to paddle. A glance at the stats shows that in all of paddlesports the deaths per year are in the low 100s. 60% of those deaths were in cases where the paddler wasn't wearing a PFD, and well over half constituted canoe deaths. On top of that, every rapid I scout I consider huh, is this rapid going to kill me? If it looks like it will, I won't run it. I trust myself and my team on the river.
I figure there's still a better chance I'll die from a car crash, and driving isn't nearly as much fun as paddling.
Anyway, enough talk of death. This isn't Hoffman's blog after all...
Not sure what's on for the weekend yet; I may get out and catch some surf if I can't put together a whitewater trip. Looks like a road trip around the south island may be in order for midsemester break, but that's a bit up in the air as well.
My buddy Kyle is engaged now. Good for him. Apparantly he started the proposal by asking his girlfriend "if she'd like to be buried with my people." Ah Kyle...
The little lamby-lambs are really cute.
September break has jumped up on me; I'm not sure what I'm going to do yet. I want to get to the south island, but I'm not sure what I want to do when I get there.
I've been writing some and I've been getting work done on the law school apps, so that's good. Otherwise, things are generally peachy.
Oh, and last night I was almost attacked by a black swan. The two swans in the pond on campus have baby swans (not goslings, but what?). They're cute little gray puffballs. Anyway, I was walking home from the alpine club meeting and didn't see them until ma and pa started squawking at me and coming at me. I almost took a swing at them with my bag but realized that an international student killing a black swan on campus probably wouldn't be looked on too fondly.
Oh, turns mohagano is actually mangaho. Good to know.
Let's see. In other news, Courtney is moving into an apartment in Newport Beach and starting a job in a theatre pretty soon, so that's exciting. I'm still pretty much coasting along as far as classes go, though I think at some point I actually have to do some work this week. And yeah, more paddling next weekend. Wahoo!
The other day I attended a drama club meeting, and it looks like I'll be bringing the 24 hour theatre festival to New Zealand. It worked really well when we ran it at CSB, so hopefully it will run smoothly here as well. I'm a little worried about getting enough people to turn out for the thing, but by the looks of it I get to be the brains of everything and deligate the publicity to other people. Should be a good time.
Some friends and I are also looking into chartering a sailboat in Able Tasman national park (north end of south island, lots of little islands and harbors). I sail, and one of my flatmates is a bit sailor who's itching to get back on the water, so we may be able to make things work pretty well. The boats aren't astronomically expensive either. We'll see what works out.
I'm still sort of stuffy, but the whole feverish-sickness is pretty much gone. It looks like I'll have paddling road trips set up for the next two weekends; in the process of heading to rivers I'll manage to see most of the north island. Pretty good way to travel if you ask me. Other than that not a lot is going on; a bit of reading/writing/studying/climbing/cards/movies/etc., but nothing too out of the ordinary.
Oh, and don't ever see the movie Swordfish. Your time can be spent better somewhere else.
More photos from Mahagano. This is Damian, one of the locals I've befrinded.
Yesterday was a lot of fun, I got to climb and paddle in the same day. Sounds like I'm doing some paddling today too. Yippie! We're also planning on doing a road trip in three weeks. If all goes as planned we'll be running the highest commercially rafted waterfall in the southen hemisphere (7 meters). Should be a good time. Classes and everything are going pretty well; I've started law school applications for my short list schools (Berkley, Harvard, Stanford, Yale, UCLA, Pepperdine, Lewis and Clark), so that's all kinds of fun.
Yesterday I went for a paddle at Mahagano (the whitewater course), and after dinner hung out with some of the paddlers. We went to a costume party (sans costumes), wandered around with some people we didn't know, almost got into a fight (we ran, whee!), went to the pubs, and generally had a good time.
Another shot of the beach and the dunes.
Last night I went to go see A Shaggy Dog Story at the Centrepoint theatre in town. The show was good, not knock-my-socks-off-amazing, but it was entertaining. They had one excellent actor and no bad ones. It was also kiwi written, produced, and acted, so it was cool to get some local flavor in it. Afterwards I hung out with a couple of the actors and we talked about the states v. new zealand, theatre here versus theatre there, etc. I may meet up with them after their show on Saturday and go out for drinks with them. Should be a good time.
Today is clubs day, where all of the different clubs are out on the concourse trying to get people to sign up. It was interesting; clubs day at CSB/SJU is a lot bigger deal than it is here. Anyway, I'm already in the alpine club, and I also joined the drama club (I may do some writing for them) and KAOS (killing as an organised sport), in which a bunch of people get together, shoot each other with NERF guns and squirt guns, then go have a party. Our first meeting is on Saturday. I also talked to a guy about Mages, a role playing/Magic/geek gathering that happens once a week. I may have to go to that as well.
Here are a couple shots from the Bliss Stick factory; I think they have the best view of any factory I've ever seen.
I made it out to the whitewater course today and gave the new boat a good workout. The guy I paddled with was sponsered for awhile and is much better than I am, which is a good sort of paddling buddy to have. I should be able to buy a paddle and a PFD from one of his flatmates, and then I'll be all set. I really like my boat so far; it's got the right amount of volume for me and it feels like it should open up the doors to a lot of different freestyle moves. We'll see how things go.
It seems like my photos are running about a week behind everything else, mainly due to the hassle of getting them from my camera to the web, via a friend's laptop, then a flash drive, then finally to this webpage. Anyway, this first shot is of me, when we were at the beach last weekend. Pretty classy.
I had a bit of an adventure this weekend when I made a pilgrimage to bliss stick kayaks (http://www.blissstick.com) to pick up a boat. It involved meeting the owner of the company, crashing on one of the designers' couches, considering buying a life jacket from a guy before he goes off to prison, and getting dumped off by a pair of skiiers in the middle of nowhere. It was quite the trip. I ended up with a great boat for a price I could afford. I didn't even have to take the bus.
This is a shot of zorbing, which I think I talked about earlier. It was during our orientation week; it basically involved being thrown into one of these big balls with two other people and a bucket of water, then they send you flying down the hill. Apparantly it's the only place in the world that it can be done. Pretty cool stuff. It was a good ride, but it's not something I'd line up to do every weekend.
This was our crew when we were caving, also during our orientation week. I was slow with the photos because they're all from Allison's camera, and they were photos that I didn't take. We were happy to have the wetsuits; the whole rapelling-down-waterfalls thing would have been pretty damn cold without them.
Hopefully this afternoon I'll be able to go paddling; I went into Mountain Equiptment, the local gear store, and talked to one of the employees who is apparantly a big paddler, as are all of his flatmates. They hit the whitewater course a few times a week, so it looks like I'll have plenty of paddling hookups. Yay.
I agree with the guy, but feel free to voice your own opinions. I think the logic is pretty airtight.
The kitchen in my flat. The toaster is funky in that when it pops the bread up the elements don't turn off, resulting in the bottom half of your bread/toast being burned beyond all recognition if you're not paying attention. Trust me. I've been there.
I feel like I'm finally starting to establish myself around here. I went kayaking last night (Vahoo!) at the nearby whitewater park with one of the locals. He found a boat, paddle, and PFD for me to use and showed me around. It was great to be back out on the water and meeting people. It turns out that his regular paddling buddy just left for a year and he's been looking for people to head out to the park with . And here I am. Playboating-wise we're both about at the same level, just working out cartwheels. He doesn't creek much, but that's not a huge issue for the rivers that are around here. It just means I'll probably have to find someone else if I want a partner for the south island.
I have my books now ($200 or so, byebye). Things are a bit different out here, no quizzes, only a couple assingments per class per semester, and then a big final exam (60% of your grade, usually). It could be good or bad, depending on how things go.
This is where babies are made.
In other news, I've started classes. Though there are more people on campus now, it's definately not the population explosion I expected. I'm not quite sure where everybody is. I suppose it's somewhat like school in Minnesota; everybody seems to show up once the weather gets nice.
My Organisational Comm. class should be pretty standard for communications classes; interesting, but not enthralling. My travel writing class should be really good though, especially since some of my writing will be fodder for my thesis. I haven't had my Ethics class yet; it's scheduled for Thursday, but apparantly there's a teacher's union strike tomorrow, so we'll see what happens. I'll be climbing tonight at the wall with the alpine club, which should be a good time. This weekend I'm planning on finally getting a boat and doing some paddling, which should be great.
Here's a self-shot at the Massey Climbing Wall (where I'm actually headed after I type this). I like the wall; lots of bouldering and overhangs, which we don't have much of at SJU.
Went to the ocean today with a group of expatriats. It was a nice beach, but cold and windy, with lots of sand blowing off the dunes and into my eyes, it seemed. The surf was small but it looks like it'd be a decent reef break if the swell was right.
Last night we watched Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. Great movie, but a bit hard to watch since I saw it for the first time with Courtney and there are some cute scenes in it. And Courtney is 7,000 miles away. Boo.
Classes start tomorrow. After all of the scheduling issues things are finally sorted out; I have Travel Writing, Pratical Ethics, Organizational Communication, and my thesis for SJU. Should be a good semester.
This shot was from a hike we took today. It was a nice walk, though most of it was through foliage so thick it was almost like a rainforst. Cool stuff, though the views weren't too great. The river we were hiking along could be a great whitewater river if it had about 2-3 times the volume.
Last night we went to town and bar-hopped for awhile. I was even denied access to one bar due to the fact that my shoes and pants (the ones with the patches) were "too casual." The place had $5 beers anyway, so it wasn't a big loss. I just went back to the previous bar and played another game of pool. We also met one of the locals and hung out with him for awhile; he gave us a pretty good overview of the town. Where people went, what certain pubs were like, etc. Good guy.
I've been settling in pretty well, and hopefully within the week I'll have a boat, PFD, and paddle, so next weekend I'll be able to start hitting the rivers. Transportation is a bit of a hassle without a car, but hopefully I'll manage to meet some kiwi paddling friends. Otherwise I can start hopping busses; I'll get by one way or the other.
Tomorrow (sunday, for me) will probably be bumming around pretty close to home; not enough time to make a big excursion. This morning we went to the farmer's market, which will have to be a weekly ritual. Great, fresh produce and all pretty cheap, or at least cheaper than the grocery stores.
So yeah, all is well in NZ.
I've been sort of manic-depressive lately; at times I'm really liking this whole study aborad thing, but other times I feel like I'm halfway to packing my bags. I think things will pick up quite a bit once the student population shows up; 30,000 people dropping into the city should change things quite a bit. Hopefully then I'll start making paddling and surfing contacts and things will take off. Hopefully.
That's about it for now; I feel like I'm doing pretty well but really want to get out onto the water, especially since I found the New Zealand Whitewater Guide and have been sitting around salivating at the river descriptions. I've got a whitewater park 20 minutes away. The place is rigged with floodlights that I can turn on for an hour and a half for $5 for nighttime paddling. The ocean's also not too far away, with tons of surf kayaking and I've got world class rivers within an easy 2 hour drive. Just no boat. Yet.
Turns out the Irish flatmate is indeed an English flatmate.
I climbed at the rock gym yesterday and lost my watch amidst the giant piles of foam on the floor. I found it about an hour later, along with $11 in change. Sweet.
I also made dinner last night with some curry paste left over from the flat's previous occupants. Turns out it wasn't minnesota-hot curry paste like I'm used to, but honest-to-god-thai-atomic-hot curry paste. I ate dinner alongside a cup of yogurt and a bowl of ice cream. Then this morning I learned that hot curry burns both coming in and going out.
Studying abroad is informative.
We also found the local rock gym, and it turns out the owner is the sponsor of the Massey University Alpine Club (MUAC). He told us about the club, which is 250 strong of paddlers, climbers, skiiers/snowboarders, and hikers. I'm going to their meeting once class is back in session. I may even go back there and climb this afternoon.
Our final roommate has also arrived, leaving us with three americans, two germans, and one irish flatmate. Should be a good group.
I also watched Garden State last night. It was pretty "meh." I was pretty tired at the time though. I'm trying to get myself on a semi-normal sleeping pattern; up until last night I've been going to bed around 9 and waking up around 6:30. Today I finally slept in until 8:30. yay!
Now it's time for some breakfast.
The flight was better than I expected; I was in the very back row so I had lots of room to recline, and I ended up being seated next to a creative writing professor from Brisbine. I slept pretty solidly, helped along by a little bottle of wine and a couple of sleeping pills.
I met up with a group of AustraLearn students headed to three Universities; we've been staying at a hostel in Rotoroua, a town big with tourists due to adventure tourism and the town's hot springs. We saw sheep shearing, went zorbing (rolling down a hill in a giant inflateable ball), saw a Maori cultural evening (a bit eerie, like a living natural history museum), went caving (in a wet cave, wearing wetsuits, crawing through little tunnels, rapelling down waterfalls), had some great meals, and chilled out in our naturally heated pool. It's been a lot of fun.
Today we all head off to Uni; I think 8 or 9 of us are on a bus to Palmerston North. I'll try to get another update out when I get settled in.
I sold my kayak (one of them) and am planning on picking another up when I get there.
I really like living in the city too; I've basically been biking everywhere.
So yeah. Now I have to go write a brief.
I'm back from my trip to Alaska, and Courtney is off to California. The former is great, the latter not so good. I'm living down in the cities with Keirsa and working at an injury law firm downtown. The work is interesting and it pays pretty well, so I can't really complain. I may even start riding my bike in to work. Woot.
We have wireless both at work and at home, but I usually just use my palm pilot, which doesn't work so well with blogger. Hence, not so many updates. Then it's off to New Zealand.
Hilights from Alaska: seeing a beeched whale, tons of glaicers, hundreds of otters, running the hardest whitewater I've ever attempted, breaking a paddle in half, breakfast at a little bitty ski lodge, hanging out with my cousin Brogen, driving a stick shift everywhere.
Higlights now: having my own room in a house, biking to the store and everywhere else, riding the bus, working on interesting cases, living in a city and not in the middle of nowhere, catching up with old friends.
So yeah, if you're around the twin cities, drop me an email and we'll get together before I'm off to the southern hemisphere.
I've been packing up, which always makes me a bit morose. I'm going to a Leo Kottke concert with my parents and Courtney's family, which should be good. Oh, and I have a myspace account (http://www.myspace.com/everythingsjake) which I may post a permanent link to on this page when I feel ambitious.
Oh, I got a new palm pilot after shattering my old trusty one. It was a bit more spendy, but it has wifi and bluetooth, which is a lot of fun. Woo hoo.
Everybody go watch the thunderstorms.
Though we'll probably role play again, it will never been the same with almost half our group graduating (by guys!). The sun has set on our epic journeys.
*pours out some ale for his D&D homies*
I once asked the janitor what his favorite 40oz was. He said, "the one that Lando Calrissian sonnuva bitch drinks."
I woke up one morning after halloween with a ticket on my nightstand.
Apparently I had been lying down piss drunk on the sidewalk the night before dressed as a pirate when a cop happened along.
The cop asked, "Sir, are you okay?"
All I did, according to the cop, was poke him with my piece-of-shit plastic sword, and yell "ARRRR!"
It may have costed me fifty bucks, but damn, that's a good story to tell people.
3 a.m.- we had eaten a large cheese pizza and drank way too much kamchatka vodka (on the bottom shelf at every supermarket)...
"you know what sounds good?" my roommate asked
"don't say it," i replied
we drank more, wasting time, then drunkenly rode bicycles to the donut store...
we were waiting when they opened at 4:30 a.m.
We camped at a campsite that happened to be the take-out and hiked the Lower Baptism, which is a solid class IV with some class V. We saw Two-Step, which was a 10-12 foot falls to a small pool, then another narrower, meaner falls of about the same height. We realized we couldn't run the river with just the two of us, since neither of us knew the river and it would be impossible to set saftey. Later, we ended up hanging out with another group of paddlers who were at the campsite, and we decided to paddle the Manitou with them.
Sunday, after a long shuttle and waiting for everybody to get ready, we set off. The first mile or so was slow goings through an alder swamp, then we heard thunder and saw a smoking horizon line. We portaged a 60 foot, broken, mean looking waterfall which, though it may have been run, is basically a mandatory walk. We then were treated to some fun rock-dodging boulder garden paddling before we had to portage along the Superior Hiking Trail around an unrunnable Class VI canyon. We put in again into some more boulder gardens. Jason and I were the last two in a group of 11, and as we rounded a bend we saw them taking out on both sides to scout a significant horizon line. As I was eddying out Jason got flipped, then his boat pinned on a rock. He struggled for a moment, then popped his skirt and swam. I turned my boat into the current so I could catch him and paddle him to shore before he was pulled over the rapid. He let go of his boat and swam, making it to the eddy. I missed the eddy and realized I was going to run the rapid blind. One guy, who was at the brink of the falls, motioned me over until I was on line, then I plunged over an 8 or 10 foot falls. My line was good and I was spit cleanly out the bottom, where I chased down Jason's boat. I had run my first big falls blind, while chasing a boat. Good times.
We had another series of ledges and boulders, with one of the more experienced paddlers swimming after getting stuck below a technical ledge. Later, dropping down a 3 foot ledge Jason was flipped again. He tried to roll up, half-assed his roll a couple times, then swam again. We scrambled to get his boat and gear to shore, then it was a pain in the ass to get his boat back to him, since they were on opposite sides of the river, which was full of boulders, and we were above another Class IV drop. Eventually we managed, and as Anette (one of the rescuers) and I got into our boats Jason headed downstream and swam again over another ledge. Apparantly it was an ugly swim, and this time he lost his paddle. When I got downstream and ran the ledge (part of it backwards after getting turned around and recovering) Jason was hiking out, since he lost his paddle the 3rd time. The group went on, down to 10, and we ran a larger, maybe 12 foot, falls, which was a blast. More boulders and ledges ensued, then we took out before a monster waterfalls that has never been run and probably never will be. We saw the falls with the sun at our backs, and the mist created a perfect rainbow bridging the canyon.
We hiked out the rest of the way to Hwy 61, then I threw all of my gear in Jason's truck, remembered how to drive a stick shift, then headed out to pick him up near the put-in. After that, I headed home.
I'll have photos soon.
This is funny. Terrible. But way funny.
If you were in an enclosed arena, how many five year olds could you take down?
Other than the boat chasing it was a great day; I got some good surfs in and was able to drop back into the hole that kicked my ass the last few times I was in it.
I'm tired now.
Poetry slam at SJU this week, which I'm still trying to organize. Should be fun, as long as we have enough participants. Here's hopin'.
I was raging drunk after a night of taking shots of Bacardi 151 in my dorm room. In my intoxicated frenzy I demonstrated to my friends how one could go about breathing fire with a swig of the highly potent(and highly flammable) spirit. The first time I did it, they seemed pretty impressed. The second time around they were peering out of the second story window I had just fallen out of, after having set my hands on fire.
Break was good; Courtney, Tom, Mo, and I went up to the cabin to hang out for a couple days. We went to the casino and played bocce ball on the frozen lake, which was kind of like playing on the moon. Neato.
I paddled the Vermillion once during break and a guy came down to talk to me. Apparantly he had canoed and sea kayaked, but wanted to get into whitewater. I told him where I paddled and where I got my boat. He told me he once paddled the entire length of the Mississippi. Pretty cool. When I got back to my car I found a book on my windshield, "Floating Down the Country." He left me a note inside thanking me for my help.
I thought it was a nice gesture. I started reading the book, which really isn't very good. At all. He's not much of a writer, and the book is broken down into days, most of which read "I paddled until I got tired, then it started to rain, I found a bar along the river, people bought me drinks, I got drunk, then set my tent up in the rain after dark." I'm almost done though, and I kind of feel obligated to finish it.
I've been paddling a lot lately, especially at Saulk Rapids, which is really coming up (as are most of the rivers in the area). I'll try to post pictures when I can. Yay for paddling.
I went paddling again today, which was a lot of fun. I found a few playspots even on the saulk rapids at low-ish water, which was pretty cool.
Oh, and spring break is coming up. Nothing huge planned, just a gathering of friends up at the lake. Should be a good time.
if you're coming, bring food ;)
I've been able to get out kayaking a little bit lately, which has been nice. I can't wait until things thaw out. I've been writing a lot, and I've been generally keeping busy.
Oh, and I have red hair now. I'll upload a picture if I feel ambitious.
I also got another rejection letter yesterday. Oh well.
I participated in a survey awhile back, and my name was drawn for a $50 gift certificate at Target. Woo hoo! Other good news, my mom and I are headed to Alaska for a week after Courtney's commencement. I may even get to do some kayaking.
I've been sending more of my work out into the great wide world, so hopefully somebody will pick it up. We had another Studio1 meeting last night (the campus literary journal) and both the poem and the story I submitted made it past the first round of reviews. I was sure not to say anything about them; I just claimed that I recognized the work.
I hope some stuff gets accepted. Then I won't have to send it out again. Postage is expensive.
Courtney and I also learned how to play Gin, which is a lot of fun. We were looking for a two-handed card game that we both liked, and I think we've found one.
I almost had a chance to go kayaking this weekend, but the Vermillion froze up before I could get down to it. Hopefully we'll get another string of warm days to open things up.
A lady at a party goes up to Winston Churchill and tells him, 'Sir, you are drunk.' Churchill replies, 'Madam, you are ugly. In the morning, I shall be sober.
I was walking across a bridge one day, and I saw a man standing on the edge, about to jump off. So I ran over and said "Stop! Don't do it!" "Why shouldn't I?" he said. "Well, there's so much to live for!" "Like what?" "Well... are you religious?" He said yes. I said, "Me too! Are you Christian or Buddhist?" "Christian." "Me too! Are you Catholic or Protestant ? "Protestant." "Me too! Are you Episcopalian or Baptist?" "Baptist" "Wow! Me too! Are you Baptist Church of God or Baptist Church of the Lord?" "Baptist Church of God!" "Me too! Are you original Baptist Church of God, or are you reformed Baptist Church of God?" "Reformed Baptist Church of God!" "Me too! Are you Reformed Baptist Church of God, reformation of 1879, or Reformed Baptist Church of God, reformation of 1915?" He said, "Reformed Baptist Church of God, reformation of 1915!" I said, "Die, heretic scum", and pushed him off. (Emo Philips)
I was coming back from Canada, driving through Customs, and the guy asked "Do you have any firearms with you?" I said: "What do you need?' (Steven Wright)
Jesus and Saint Peter are golfing. St. Peter steps up to the tee on a par three and hits one long and straight. It reaches the green. Jesus is up next. He slices it. It heads over the fence into traffic on an adjacent street. Bounces off a truck, onto the roof of a nearby shack and into the rain gutter, down the drain spout and onto a lilly pad at the edge of a lake. A frog jumps up and snatches the ball in his mouth. An eagle swoops down, grabs the frog. As the eagle flies over the green, the frog croaks and drops the ball. It’s in the hole. Saint Peter looks at Jesus, exasperated. "Are you gonna play golf?" he asks "Or are you just gonna fuck around?"
A guy meets a hooker in a bar. She says, "This is your lucky night. I’ve got a special game for you. I’ll do absolutely anything you want for $300, as long as you can say it in three words." The guy replies, "Hey, why not?" He pull his wallet out of his pocket, and one at a time lays three hundred-dollar bills on the bar, and says, slowly: "Paint…my…house."
What's the fastest way to a girl's heart?
Probably a scalpel.
In a southern eating establishment:
Waitress: Sorry, we don't serve negros here
Ali: Nah, I don't eat 'em 'neither. Just give me a couple of burgers and a vanilla shake
Today: homework. Oh, and I got to be helpful by picking a lock for a friend of mine. I demanded chocolate in return.
The big news is that Courtney and I have been together for two years as of today. YAY! It's been a very very happy two years.
I'm having trouble with my upper division Theo class. It's like being in church, without the standing up and sitting down. It makes me drowsy. Boo.
Oh, I tried out my new kayak, on water this time. I managed to get some time during open swim to work on boat control and some rolls. It's a fast boat, and turns really well. I even learned a new roll, which works a lot better than the one I've been doing. Hopefully I'll get some time in the pool tonight as well.
I just ran into a crazy black homeless guy who's pretty funny. I see him and he's yelling at some girls, so I say "Hi." He comes over, "What's it take to get a driver's license?" I reckon you just go down to the DMV and take a test. "Do they tell you to run over niggers?" No, not that I remember. Then he mooched some change off me and wanted to know if I wanted to go drinking with him. I should be off in an alley drinking with that guy, but instead I'm here at work.
"'Ain't nothing but 10 grand. What's 10 grand, to me?'' said Moss, whose salary this season is $5.75 million. He then jokingly suggested he might perform a more vulgar celebration next time.
Boy do I ever love professional sports.
I'm back at school now; I've got a roommate, Peter, who moved in yesterday. He seems to be a pretty good guy. He's a bit of a nerd, but that's fine, since I have some nerd genes as well. I think it's going to be a good semester.