Showing posts from October, 2008

I've Let Harold Down, A Celebration and an Addiction

Congressman John Kline came out to visit our facility on Tuesday. I'm not sure if my conversation with him this past Saturday had anything to do with his decision to contact our union and set up the visit. It doesn't really matter—just that he made the effort. I heard from our local union President, Craig, that John committed to sitting down with our political liaison, Steve, the next time we have legislation important to our cause and going through that legislation line by line so there can be no misunderstanding about our issues. A commitment of that sort would make for a successful visit if Natca is able to follow through on those plans. I've let down one of my friends at work with my decision to vote for Obama. Harold came up to me on Thursday with a bewildered look on his face as he asked me if it was true. I gave him a brief explanation for how I came to my decision then I gave him the URL of my blog. He asked if it was really necessary that I put an Obama s

They Said What?

I had a feeling of guilt come over me while I was on my Monday morning loop this morning (one of my favorite rides of the week btw). I was down along the river by Black Dog power plant doing battle with a stiff 20mph northwest wind in 30 degree temps when it dawned on me that neither Tammy nor I had contributed to John Kline's campaign lately. We'd made a conscious decision that we wouldn't be contributing to any campaigns this year. Not even the $100 refundable contribution you can make to the party of your choice. It's all a part of our disillusionment with the politics of our times. But it didn't seem right. Money sent. Guilt satisfied. I came back from my ride and sat down with the paper for a few minutes before getting ready for work. I don't usually find myself in agreement with the editorial board of the Star Tribune but I was this morning. Second District: John Kline Republican Rep. John Kline has significant differences with the Editorial

A 2nd Chance at a Missed Opportunity

I waited for the temps to warm up a bit before heading out on my bike today. I didn't want to wear any more than was necessary because I knew I'd be out there a while and I hate being over-dress ed when I ride. The temp was just under 50 when I got away at 11:45. I started down the hill just off Jalisco with my cellphone camera in my hand to grab a photo of the police car which has been sitting across the street from Congressman John Kline's home. He and several other members of Congress and the Senate had their homes vandalized with spray paint a few nights ago. It's a slow day in my blog world so I'd intended to write about the police presence. Just after shooting the photo I noticed that John was out painting over the graffiti on his garage door. We'd corresponded a few times last winter and we closed with him inviting me to stop by and introduce myself the next time I saw him out and about. Today was that day. I doubled back and cycled up his dr

My Mind is Made Up

We brought Toby and Allie home to live with us 5 years ago yesterday . They're still the little rascals they were when we first brought them home. We kept them in separate kennels for the first few months before we gave them full roam of the house. I thought of the kennels as battery chargers. We'd put the pups in them, all drained of energy. When we'd take them out they'd be fully charged. Maybe you've seen this video of them from 5 years ago. If not, enjoy . Rachel came home from her dad's this morning so she could go to church with her friends. She attends a service with kids her age and it's an important part of her week. She said that on the way home, a car full of kids pulled alongside her and showed her a paper with the words "show us your tits" written on it. She smiled and did her best to ignore them while they went on ahead of her. A few miles later she saw that a police car had somebody pulled over. Any guesses who? Spea

Turning 5 and Stuff to Reminisce By...Later

'Say What?' turned 5 years old this month. Of all the things I do online, writing in my blog is the one I value most. There is something therapeutic about putting my thoughts down in print. Actually, it's the act of working through my thoughts and understanding them which is therapeutic. I do this for me but I'd be lying if I said I didn't enjoy the company of those who follow along because they find some interest in it as well. Indulge me while I lay down some tracks to reminisce by with a glass of California red on a cold and snowy winter night twenty years from now. Hello Self. I headed out Thursday at noon for what I figured would be a 40-mile ride. The temp was in the lower 50s and not forecast to get much warmer. I normally work a day shift on Thursdays but Reid needed a shift swap so he worked my Thursday shift and I'll work for him on Saturday. I'd intended to do the loop into Eagan then southwest to Prior Lake and back home but by the t

An Invitation, a Celebration and a Decided Nation

My neighbor, Mark, has been kicking around the idea of getting a rode bike for a few months. He's got a hybrid bike which he's been trying to lighten with new parts but I think he's squeezed as much weight out of it as he's going to. I asked him if he'd like to accompany me on a ride and use one of my bikes to get a feel for a real rode bike. He jumped at the chance. His longest ride so far is 29 miles so I figured a 27 mile loop on a nicer bike would be a good distance for him. We road side by side along the shoulder of Cedar avenue as we headed south into a 10mph. I let him set the pace. He was riding harder/faster than I expected him to and before long the pace began to take its toll. I asked him what his heart rate was and he replied, "169". I was worried that he was pushing himself too hard as I was hovering at 102 bpm. I could tell he was caught up in the feel of a light, responsive bike under him. Any half-serious road cyclist can rela

Monday Mornings and Facebook Friending Leads to Reminiscing

With my new schedule change I'm back to doing a ride on Monday mornings just as I used to a couple years ago. Of all the riding I do throughout the week my Monday morning ride has always been my favorite. I suppose it's because I can't beat myself up too badly on it as I have to work in the afternoon. It's an early morning ride with less traffic than I'm used to so that too no doubt plays a part. This past Monday's ride put me over 5000 road miles for 2008. That's significantly less miles than at the same point the past several years but that's all a part of the plan to moderate my mileage. So far, so good. Anything over 6000 miles this year will be just fine. I have a Facebook account but I'm not really sure why. I think my brother may have sent me an invite this past spring and I signed up then. Until recently I've done very little with it. I was 'friended' last month by Steve , a person I only know through my blog. We s

Uncertainty and Charlie Bit Me!

It's quite easy to get caught up in all that's wrong with our world and the uncertainty that the near future holds for us. Our once-invincible economy is showing signs of age and some deep-rooted​ problems. How much pruning and dead-wood need to be cut away to make it healthy again is anybody's guess as is how much pain we'll experience during the process. Maybe we'd all feel more comfortable if this were a cyclical thing where we could go into it knowing what to expect but that's not the case. We're in uncharted waters. It doesn't help that we've been weakened by hundreds of billions of dollars spent in Iraq with little to show for our efforts and no end in sight. I want to trust that minds much smarter than mine have an understanding of what needs to be done but I no longer give this president and his administration the benefit of that trust. I took the pups out this morning while I retrieved the paper from under the mailbox. I scanned it

Phone Help, a Type of Learning and You're Breaking Up

I got a call yesterday from somebody inquiring if either Tammy or I would be interested in working the phones for a "get out the vote" campaign for John McCain. She said she got our name from something we filled out at the neighborhood caucus last year. I told her I wasn't too interested in seeing McCain elected. I mentioned that four years ago we were listed as "hard republican" in the database they use. Tammy worked the phones for a similar campaign last election and she looked us up. I went on to say that Bush had beaten the Republican out of me. I told her that I wouldn't be voting for Obama either and that I'd most likely be writing in Huckabee's name knowing it would be a vote thrown away. Or would it? She asked me if I was concerned that we'd become a more socialist society if Obama were to be elected and I told her that I wasn't too worried about that possibility. I said that my 'throw-away' vote for Huckabee would b