Went for a bicycle ride. So did Dorothea and Yuna. But we went separately–I went by myself. I started at about 1:15 and returned at 4:00 PM. Since I figure that I average 11 mph, I may have done thirty miles. My route was:
Summit Avenue to Kellogg by the Cathedral and History Museum
Through downtown Saint Paul
Across the Wabasha bridge
The road behind Harriet Island
Right at the Lillydale Yacht and Pool
Across the Mendota bridge
Down to Fort Snelling
Up the old railroad grade in the cut through the limestone and sandstone
Left along Minnehaha Creek
East side of Lake Harriet
East side of Lake Calhoun
29th Street Greenway to
the Mississippi River

and back home.

Just before I got to 50th on my way to Lake Harriet, a minivan making a left-hand turn hit a bicyclist in a crosswalk. The bicyclist went down. He was with a group of other bikers. I turned left, and cutting across the grass, intercepted the van. I put me and my bike in front of the van. The woman looked uncertain. I told her that she had hit a person on a bike. She said she didn’t know. She pulled into the parking lot. The biker was up, and he and his group were heading over. The woman got out of her van. She seemed concerned.

I rode on.




Vikings–the Middle Ages kind

Yuna, Liam, and I ended up at the Science Museum last night. We went to the latest showing of Vikings: Journey to New Worlds. Which was entertaining and I think would be okay as Medival history. We saw not one but two of Liam’s teachers there. I wandered around the Mississippi River exhibit for the short time that we had before the movie. Yuna ended up sticking with Liam. Not sure that was her first choice, but Liam just kind of drew her in. It is clear that Liam sees her as a buddy.
Our museum visit was short because we went to Tanpopo Noodle Shop . The food is great, the environment okay, the service–very slow. Plus, I parked by the musuem, and the walk to the restaurant was almost a mile. Poor reckoning.
The absolute highlight though was the brief glimpse we got of the half-moon just as it was rising. That was spectacular.


Dorothea, Liam, and I walked to Cadenza Music. Liam wanted to get the drumsticks and music book for band, which he started yesterday. He is doing his homework now at the other end of the diningroom table.
We had been waiting for Liam to finish his homework, which usually doesn’t take very long. But tonght it was taking longer. I figured because he was having fun with Yuna. Dorothea and I were watching the beginning of the movie Tranamerica while we were waiting.
He was still working on his homework when Dorothea and I were going to walk down there with Stella, the dog–get that walk in too. (Flashlight required, because it is already dark.) Liam wanted extrememly to come along, too. So it was the three of us.
Now it is on to Liam practicing his guitar. Week 3, I think.

P.S.: Liam took his drumsticks to bed with him.

I am waiting for Stella to come in out of the rain after a walk around the block. I now see that she is interested in the birds on the ground under the bird feeder. Like she’s going to catch a bird. Hope not.
I was planning to go to the house concert at my former co-worker Al’s house this evening. But this concert is actually an outside the house concert, and it is raining. So I won’t go and say that I did. Actually, say that I did. First, Dorothea and I were going to go. But she stood me up to go visit her sister in Bemidji. I invited Liz, and she accepted, but wasn’t interested in the rain. And, I am not crazy about driving home from St. Louis Park at night in the rain. So be it.
I did see that this is the state Sacred Harp singing weekend. How did I not know that? How do I live my life this way? They were at a church not far from my house today. I just saw it in the newspaper today. But, they’re at Murphy’s Landing tomorrow, so I should be able to get there. Fortunate that the family is away, so I can go do the whole day guilt-free.
This morning, Stella and I went for a four-mile walk. I went to the Y and ellipticalled. I also drove up to my old work site and picked up my mail. After that I wen to Hao Bien, a new, nice Vietnamese restaraunt. I had a 38–Banh Xeo–Vietnamese pancakes. It was served with a large plate of greens–lettuce and mint for sure, some others. The waitress took pity on me and showed my how to eat it by tearing off some lettuce, putting some of the mint and other herbs in it, and tearing off a section of the pancake–omelette, really–with chopsticks. Eating an omelette with chopsticks is interesting. It was all pretty messy, especially the dipping in fish sauce part. Very good, though. Finally, I went to the driving range. It started to rain just as I finished my bucket. While I was there two 747s, one a bit later than the other, flew relatively low overhead, on shallow trajectories, fuel-heavy on their way to Tokyo, I expect. Always pause for that. So amazing.

What would Norm do? What would Garrison do?

Almost everyone in my new department, except for the guy in Cincinnati, is going to the funeral of their colleague who died of cancer on Monday. He was already in hospice when I got here. So I never met him. I am not going to the funeral, and am a bit tormented. But  pretty sure. How often is it that you transfer into a new department and a veteran dies, unless you’re in the millitary?
What would Norm do?
I can’t find the references now–but the sequence went like this–first, annoucement that Eric Mische was resigning as Norm’s chief-of-staff–to presumably become a lobbyist. Then, the next day or so, an article about Norm being encouraged to return a contribution from some oil concern. All followed by Norm being appointed as an envoy to the U.N.
What would Garrison do?
Garrison Keillor is going to open a bookstore in the basement of the Nina’s. I have mixed feelings about this.

Swipper Hell

Saturday morning. Raining. Cool. We haven’t had this sort of weather for quite awhile. I am so accustomed to thinking it is always going to be 100° F. (And so at war the ASCII code for the degree symbol. Just had to look it up. Such is the power of obsessive-compulsive disorder. Why don’t they just put the darn thing on the keyboard? I wonder if I can map it to a key?)
Dorothea left for a morning shift at one of her many jobs. I don’t recall her saying goodbye. I imagine that I was being unpleasant, and couldn’t blame, and also doubt it is true. I must have blodded out.
Liam came down. Checked on how the Twins are doing, and made himself some oatmeal in the microwave. That process can take awhile, especially the part where he is pouring maple syrup into the bowl. After, I asked and he compliantly practiced his guitar. (Wonder if he washed his hands?)
I made some coffee, loaded the dishwasher. Though not quite full, I ran it anyway. (I am evil.) I also ran it on “Pot Scrubber” mode. I am hoping that’ll help the pot I scorched on Thursday steaming beans and it ran out of water.
Dorothea took the stove off the appliance health care plan and put the washer on it. The washer is a top loader. It has been leaking water into the drum, and I have been concerned about it going “off balance” during spin cycles. I was hoping that there was a way to get it to shutoff automatically when it goes off balance, but the guy said that there’s only one brand that has such, and it isn’t ours. He propped a piece of wood under one of the feet of the washer to even it out. I didn’t hear if he fixed the leak.
Of course, growing up, someone in our families would have dealt with these issues. Fathers, brothers, maybe even neighborhood handymen would have jumped in. No more.
The kitchen floor is sticky to the barefoot. So I vacuumed it. Never really did that before. But I am such a crappy sweeper, I thought vacuuming has got to be better. Then came a long ordeal with the Swipper mop. The pad was ucky. Changing that was okay, though it was the last pad. But then it became apparent that the batteries were dead. Liam actually found four “AA” batteries. We were still alive. (Finding, opening the battery compartment, removing old batteries, inserting new, and closing the compartment–none of these were gimmes.) The soap bottle was empty. No replacement. I know that Dorothea hates that stuff. She is probably right. So I went to the basement, to the workbench corner, what was probably once the male heart and center of the house, and clumsily pounded a nail into the bottle to create a hole so I could pour soap in. We don’t have a little funnel. The pouring in didn’t work out to well. I gave up after awhile of attempting to pour soapy water into the hole, but little went in, and of that, most ran out the bottom again.
Liam finished Swippering the floor.

Goofy morning

This morning is a goofy morning. How’s that for poetry? I am still at home and Dorothea is long gone to a meeting. I am to escort Liam to the bus. I am still quite foggy. The virtuous thing to do would study for my Project Management Certification exam, or call or email someone, or to go take the clothes out of the dryer. Or even to blog. (Hey.) But before I got to the blogging, I updated my site tracking software, extremetracking, for no other reason than I was told to by the software.
On Monday, a cable guy came. The television reception had been bad for some time–the picture was static-y and fuzzy. I didn’t mind this enough to do anything about, especially since I just figured that if watching TV were slightly unpleasant, the children wouldn’t watch it as much. But we were all watching the Twins, and after that the US Open, and the picture was so bad that we couldn’t see the ball in either. But the last straw was that our internet stopped working. That was intolerable. So I phoned in a ticket.
He replaced the line for the pole to the house. (Squirrel damage, perhaps?) We think that this is a least the second time for that problem. Hard to figure. But, now we have good cable, if you know what I mean. I have become a Twins junky. Watched them again last night. And would have watched them on Monday night, except that I watched the Vikings on what had previously been a foggy channel.
Liam hailed me from the basement. He wanted to know if I’d help him with the videotape machine. His aunt, who is working as a sort of portable nurse out east, was going to be in the audience of the David Letterman show. The idea was to tape the show. Liam was quite keen on this. The problem is that we have an ancient video machine, and getting it to do the job was problematic, so much so that I didn’t even want to get started on the task. So it fell to Dorothea. (Though I did spend quite a bit of time tinkering with it anyway.) Still don’t know if it worked, though don’t expect that it did. I told Liam that I didn’t want to monkey with it.
Disappointed, but he seemed to get over it. Since I was up, I had him bring down his laundry and we started a load. And we emptied the dishwasher. And now, if I was truly virtuous, I’d make my lunch. And take the dog for a walk.

Saint Paul Classic

The pictures, good, bad, and ugly–over-exposed, out-of-focus, true-to-life. Text to follow. For now, just to say that riding 40 miles in the “mist,” never quite a drizzle, was
a) Quite a contrast from the 6% humidity in Salt Lake
b) Made me feel alive
Many, many people opted for the 15.