Thursday, November 1, 2007

Get Growing

Movember - Changing the face of Men's Health

Movember (the month formally known as November) is a charity event held during November each year.

At the start of Movember guys register with a clean shaven face. The Movember participants known as Mo Bros then have the remainder of the month to grow and groom their Mo (Australian slang for moustache) and along the way raise as much money and awareness about male health issues as possible.

Movember culminates at the end of the month at the Gala Partés. These glamorous and groomed events will see Tom Selleck, Hulk Hogan and Borat look-a-likes battle it out for their chance to take home the prestigious Man of Movember title.

While growing a Mo (moustache) is left to the guys, Mo Sistas (ladies who support their guys or love Mo's!) form an important part of Movember by recruiting Mo Bros, helping to raise funds and attending the highly anticipated Gala Partés.

But it's not all fun and games, so why the extreme behavior?

Which ever way we look at it, men are far less healthy than women. The average life expectancy for men is many years less than females; seven years less for African American men and five years less for Caucasian men.

MO Info

Friday, October 5, 2007

London Recap

Absolutely awesome. This was by far the best trip yet. Hell this was the best weekend I have ever had full stop. The trip had a few bumps but those did not hinder my enjoyment.

I arrived at the airport in plenty of time to catch my 7:20P flight. When I was boarding I was questioned by a customs officer. The dude looked like he just took a bite of a shite sandwich when I told him I was only going for 1 day. He then asked me what I will be doing for the day so I told him I will be having a bunch of pints and catching a show, begrudgingly whilst shaking his head he let me pass.

I had a sweet seat lined up in an empty row but when I got to the row it was cordoned off and the flight attendant told me the audio did not work. I told her it would not be a problem I don't need audio (I am not going to watch the inevitability crappy movie and reruns of "Everybody Hates Chris" plus I had some episodes of Curb Your Enthusiasm to catch up on) but she said one row up was open so I could pick any seat there. That was fine with me but then a father and his two kids came down the aisle and stopped at my new row. He said he just checked in and snagged this row. No problem I could just take my original seat sans audio, or so I thought. The flight attendant did not want me to sit there, "yes" I thought first class here I come, but she was able to find me an open window seat with an empty seat next to it, not quite as comfortable as a full row but good enough. She also told me drinks would be on the house for my trouble, lucky for her I was still hungover from Thursday night and super tired so I only sucked down a couple drinks before going to sleep. By the way the movie was Talladega Nights so I was dead on about the movie being crappy.

The plane touched down right on time at 7:50A GMT. It was solid because we got to exit the plane via the huge rolling steps right out to the tarmac. When I came through the door I said to one of my fellow travelers "So this is England. It doesn't look so tough" (referencing Paulie from Rocky IV), the bloke just looked at me like I was a total nutter. We had to take a shuttle from the plane to the terminal and on the way I thought "brilliant" I'll be able to hop on the Gatwick Express and be in London no later than 9A. Man alive was I wrong.

When I arrived at the terminal my journey came to a screeching halt as the queue for customs wrapped around the terminal like a giant serpent that had just swallowed my entire trip. At first I was pissed but then I figured this is just one of the pit falls of 24 hour trips and I would still have plenty of time to check stuff out. Plus I had my MP3 player loaded up with hours of the Ricky's old XFM show to pass the time (thanks Al). I was in line for about 50 minutes then it really started to move like gang busters, apparently the customs officers decided to get off their arses and opened up more booths to handle the crowd.

By the time it was my turn to gain entrance to the UK I spent a little over an hour and a half in line. When I got to the booth the officer asked me the usual questions and when he asked me if there was anything in particular I had planed for my day in the country. I told him that I was going to see Ricky's stand up act. He said "I did not think you Americans would find him funny". I was not quite sure if the guy was trying to slag me and my fellow Americans off or if he was surprised that Gervais has made it around the globe. Anyway I told him "Yeah some of us are intelligent enough to understand his humor". The officer stamped my passport and sent me on my way.

I am not sure what time it was when I finally got to Victoria Station, I don't wear a watch and I did not want to turn my phone on to check the time because I am sure I would have text messages and emails waiting and I did not want to get stuck with the data charges. Here is a little travel tip, Victoria Station has shower facilities for only 20 pence. Friday before I left I booked a hotel through Hot Wire and got a great deal but I would have been better off just making Victoria my home base.

The first thing I did was stop in the book story at the station and purchased Sniper One by SGT. Dan Mills which, by the way is the best book I have ever read. I probably should have waited until I was leaving so I would not have to lug the book around all day but since I had no idea when I might find another book store I figured I would strike while I had the opportunity.

Buckingham Palace was first up, only because the first sign I saw pointed me in that direction. I did not have a map on me, which would prove to be a disadvantage later, so I figured I would just follow the signs and crowds. On the way to the palace a truck load of soldiers went by carrying what I assume were SA80s. The palace was huge but the outside of of it is fairly plain. I am not slagging it off, I am sure it is very nice inside but the line to get in was mental so I had to press on.

I did not have a plans for my next stop. I wanted to make it over to the Imperial War Museum, I looked it up on google before I left and I had a general idea of the location but I was not sure of the exact location. I started heading down The Mall and the Horse Guards came galloping down the street so I figured I would follow them and watch the changing of the guard. It was neat but I am not a huge fan of all the pomp and circumstance, it would be better to just have a bunch of those blokes with the SA80s standing out there. Alright, I knew the museum was just across the Thames from Big Ben which is right next to Westminster Abbey. I decided to head towards Big Ben basically because I could see to I should be able to figure out how to get there.

On my way to Big Ben I passed a snack stand that happened to have fountain Coke. I stopped to buy a Coke and test out the theory that the UK has better Coke then US. I asked the lady working the counter if the Coke was in powder form and mixed with water. Unfortunately she did not know and would not let me poke around to find the source of the pop, so that mystery will have to remain unsolved for now. I have to admit the Coke did taste a lot better but I am not sure if it was because I was so thirsty or if it was some kind of placebo effect.

I made it to Big Ben right at high noon and it was super packed. I did crack myself up when I asked someone what time it was and without hesitation the lady checked her watch. I guess she figured I was blind and could not see the gigantic clock on top of the tower. I walked around for a bit snapping a bunch of pictures and enjoying the weather. It was a perfect day, 24 degrees and sunny. I started heading across the aptly named Bridge Street bridge towards the London Eye and the Imperial War Museum when I made a decision that changed the trip for the better.

To be continued......

Monday, September 24, 2007

Man Beheads Duck, Blames Taco Bell.

Check out this story. Link. Go head I'll wait, read it then come back.

Funny stuff, huh? I have no problem with the dude that ripped the head of the duck. The guy was drunk and hungry. We have been there and at least he did not attempt to drive to a restaurant.

Hell I am not even sure what he did was illegal. The article makes no mention on whether or not it is duck season or if the guy has a hunting license. Plus how can they charge him with animal cruelty? He did not torture the thing, he just wanted a bite to eat. As far as I am concerned what he did was no different than going to KFC.

My annoyance with this story does not end there. Why the fuck are the hippies from the Humane Society getting involved? I love how they blame Embassy Suites for not keeping the ducks safe. Also why do they suggest that the hotel has fish instead? Is it OK to rip the head off a fish? I do however blame the hotel for not offer the guy some orange sauce for his duck.

Thanks for the tip B!

Friday, September 21, 2007

London Photos

I'll post some photos here Saturday if possible or Sunday for sure.

Go Out to Dinner and Help Kids.

On Monday Sept. 24th Chili's Grill and Bar will be donating 100% of their profits to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.

I'll be hitting up the Chili's in Macedonia @ 7P if you want to join me I'm buying just RSVP in the comments by 5P on the 24th.

St. Jude


Thursday, September 20, 2007

London, right around the corner.

The London 27.5 hour trip is this weekend! If any of you have more suggestions for sites to check out let me know in the comments. Things that can be seen from the outside 24 hours a day will be a great help. I know from experience the hours from 2A-6A can really get boring.

I'll put up a post for the photos but I doubt I will be able to do live updates. My phone will work over there but the international roaming data charges are mental.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

24 Hour Trip: It Has Ben Awhile But This One Will Be Big

As you may have noticed I did not take a 24 hour trip this month. I did not take one becuase I wanted to save some funds and make September's trip even better. I think I did and hopefully you will agree.

September's 24 hour trip will be to London! And I am not talking about London, ON, Canada, no I will be traveling to the real London, UK.

I am scheduled to leave Sept. 21st and I arrive in London Sept. 22nd at 7:50 A local time. Now unfortunately I will not be leaving until 11:20 A on the 23rd putting me on the ground for 27.5 hours but due to the scope of the trip I think I can have some leeway. This gets me back to Cleveland at 3P EST which works out perfectly because the Browns are playing the Raiders at 4P and since that will be the only game they have a shot at winning this year I'll be able to watch it.

As of now the only things on my to do list are hitting Ricky Gervais's stand up show Saturday night and testing out their Coke. So leave me suggestions in the comments on what I should check out.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Finally I am Above the Law! Maybe Not.

Bill Murray could be facing a drunk driving charges in Stockholm, Sweden.

The comedian was pulled over driving a golf cart early Sunday and officers suspected he was intoxicated. He refused to take a breath test test but a blood test was administered and results will be know in 14 days.

Mr. Murray was in Sweden for a golf tournament. There is no word on where the golf cart came from but he will not be facing theft charges.

Officers also thought Murray may have been suffering from Helsinki Syndrome, as in Helsinki, Sweden, where people become disoriented due the lack of oxygen in higher altitudes.

Full Story

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Australia Cracks Down on Speeders: Aussie fighter jets laser target car in traffic

In an effort to quell the recent onslaught of drag racing in New South Whales. The Australian government is using F/A-18 Hornets to target and hopefully discourage the racers.

The pilots target the racers when they are spotted lining up for a race. Thus far the laser has been enough to breakup the race but the pilots are authorized to fire if the racers decide to start anyway.

Or this was just an accidental targeting during a training flight but I only read headlines and then make up the rest.

Full Story

24 Hour Trip: New York Recap

Another 24 hour trip completed, another brilliant success.

rolled out of the rack about 5A Saturday morning, grabbed a quick shower and drove down to the Akron airport in time to catch my 6:30A flight. Flying out of Akron is great because it is a small airport and you can get from your car to your gate in 20 minutes or less. The flight only takes an hour and I was on the ground a little after 7:30A.

The landing at
La Guardia was awesome. The plane came down hard on the right side and bounced to the left, back to the right and then finally settled down. It was by far the roughest landing I have ever been in and I have had some rough ones flying into Colorado Springs. In the pilot's defense it was very windy and he probably got hit with a gust just before he touched down. It was jarring enough to invoke a few "Oh my gods" from some passengers.

I grabbed a cab around 7:50A and headed toward Battery Park hoping to catch the 8:30A boat
(the first one of the day) to The Statue of Liberty. When I purchased my ticket for the ferry online there was a note saying plan on waiting in line for around 2 hours. If this warning held true a 2 hour delay would be a real monkey in the wrench for my trip. Fortunately I only had to wait about a half an hour and made it to the island just after 9A.

I spent about an hour on the island. There is not much to see but is was nice to see the statue up close. You can still go into the statue but only in the base of it. You need a separate ticket for that, is is free but they run out weeks in advance so I did not get into the statue but for 11 bucks it was definitely worth the cash to get over there.

When I returned to Battery Park it was a little after 10 and I was amazed by how many people were in line for the ferry. It was incredible the line wrapped all through the park. If you look at the picture below the people in the picture represent the amount of people in line when I showed up and the red line indicates the length of the line only about an hour later. I guess that 2 hour wait warning was justified.

My original plan was to hop in the tube and head up to central park, this would have saved me a ton of time and energy but I figured I would not see much of the city being underground so I decided to walk. A few minutes into my journey I realized I made the correct choice. The streets were absolutely packed with people even though it was only 10A. Several of the streets were closed down and vendors setup booths with everything from fruits and vegetables to "designer" purses and sunglasses. I found a great Coach European carry-all that matched my shoes so I had to buy it.

I choose the Empire State Building as my next destination because I figured it would get crowded and since I could see it from Battery Park so I figured I could get there without a hassle. I made it to the building just after 11:30A and it was packed, damned tourists, the line was wrapped around the building. I made my way up to the front of the queue to find out the estimated wait time, which turned out to be 2-3 hours. I tried explaining to the security guards that I was on a tight schedule but they would not let me cut in line. I had enough time to wait if I wanted to but it would severely cut into the amount of other things I could see so I decided to bin the Empire State tour and head toward Grand Central Terminal.

Getting over to the terminal proved to be a little difficult because I had to take a detour around a couple of streets that were shut down due a steam pipe explosion a couple days earlier. Officials claimed the air was safe to breath but all of the police officers enforcing the barricades were wearing respirators which made me question the air quality. The terminal is very normal looking from the outside but once you pass through the very little doors the interior is indeed quite grand. One of the grandest features of the terminal was that they have beer stands near the entrances to the train tunnels. That is a brilliant idea, what a great way to pass the time while waiting for your train. I figured I should sample some of the local brew while I was in town so I sucked down a couple nice cold Buds.

By now it was almost 2P so my next stop was going to be Reuben's for some much needed sustenance. According to the America Eats show on the History Channel Reuben's is located on Madison Avenue. Now either I walked right past it or they had to close shop due to their new found popularity from the show. I used the Google 411 service (800-466-4411 a free 441 service from Google) to get the phone # and address but there was no answer and I never found the building. Lucky for me in New York there are probably as many delis as there are Starbucks so I found another place to get my Reuben straight away.

With my belly now full of food and beer I was ready to head over to Times Square but on my way I stumbled on to Rockefeller Center. This was not even on my to do list but it turned out to be a great bonus. The observation deck of Rockefeller is only a few stories shorter than the Empire but has 2 big advantages. First there was no line, I bought my ticket and was at the top in 20 minutes. Second there is not a glass or fence barrier blocking your view. Another thing that is awesome is that the elevator has a clear ceiling and the shaft is illuminated with cool blue lights (see photos in my Flickr stream of the elevator and views of the city).

I finally made my way over to Times Square just before 4P. I popped in to the ESPN Sports Zone for a couple of beers and to catch the end of the Yankee's game. When I eventually left the Sports Zone I was hungry again so I stopped at Sbarro for an authentic New York slice. I walked around for a bit more then started toward Central Park.

When I arrived at Central Park I stopped at the Chess and Checkers House and lined up 4 chess matches and 2 games of checkers. Of course I played all 6 games at the same to give myself a bit of a challenge or so I hoped. I used the same Kasparov opening on each of chess matches so I could gauge the players and figure which match would require more attention. Non of the players responded to the opening with any sort of recognizable defense so I figured they were all low level players and I dispatched them quickly. The checker players proved equally novice and I defeated them handily. If I ever make it back there I'll look for matches in the 7-10 year old group as the 5 and 6 year olds never stood a chance.

The park itself is awesome, tons of stuff going on, concerts, huge playgrounds for kids, some type of fair with carnival rides and plenty of open space to just hang out. If lived in New York I could see myself spending a lot of time here. I made my way though the center of the park up to 85Th street which bisects the park. I would have liked to walk all the way to the North end of the park but I wanted to see more of the city.

My last stop on my NY tour was the UN. This was a bit of a walk from Central Park but I took a round about path to get there so i could see more of the city and a few more pubs. The trip to the UN proved to be a waste of time. I am not a big fan or the UN in general so I imagine my opinion is a little jaded but I was not impressed by their complex or most of their policies for that matter. It was almost 7P so I flagged down a cab to get me back to the airport in time for my 8:50 flight.

When I got to the airport I had a little over an hour to spare so I stopped in the lounge to kill some time. I made it to my gate 25 minutes early but as it turned out I held up the plane, not Dobbie Keibler style but since I was the last one to board they were waiting for me to take off. To the 22 passengers I made wait I would just like to say, suckers.

The flight back was solid, it was totally empty so just about everyone had their own row. I noticed that there was a couple that were on my flight out, so I was not the only one that flew to New York for the day. I struck up a conversation with Denny and his wife Jamie , last names omitted due to drunkenness, and found out they just flew out for the Yankee's game, solid! I think that would be a great idea for a future trip, especially if I decide to take a trip to a city I have already been to.

This trip could not have gone better. I really like the city, the amount of people out on the streets is
preposterous. The one thing I was not impressed by were the buildings. Granted there are a lot of them but most of them are not that tall. You don't really have that cavernous feeling like you do in Chicago. If I ever go back I'll take advantage of the tube so I can save myself a bit of walking. I covered just over 11 miles, at least according to google earth that is how much ground I covered. I only spent about 13 hours in the city and I would have liked another 4 or 5 hours to do a little more exploring but the trip was so cheap I can have another go at it sometime.

My August trip is going to be put on hold because I am planning something completely mental for September and I'll need the extra cash. I hope to have the details for September hammered out this week and as soon as I do I'll let you know. If anyone would like to donate cash or One Pass miles to my cause let me know, cheers.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Enjoy Getting Hammered? I Have the Perfect Job for You.

A PANEL has found that astronauts were allowed to fly on at least two occasions despite warnings they were so drunk they posed a flight risk, Aviation Week reported today on its website.

I for one don't have a problem with this. If the shuttle has a problem on take off you are going to die sober or not so you might as well cash out with while having fun. Besides this has been going on for years, why do you think they called him Buzz Aldrin?

Full Story

More Invites

I have 8 Grand Central invites available. Comment if you want 'em.

I have been using GC for well over a year and it rocks. Check out all of the features here.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Pownce Invites Available

I have 5 Pownce invites that I will give away to the first 5 commenters to leave a valid email address in the comments.

What is Pownce?
Pownce is a way to send stuff to your friends.
What kind of stuff?
You can send just about anything: music, photos, messages, links, events, and more.

It is kind of like a Facebook, Myspace thing but still invite only so you won't be crushed with spam.


Monday, July 23, 2007

Squirrels Infiltrate Iran

A group of squirrels were captured in Tehran last week. The rodents were found near the Iranian border, allegedly equipped with eavesdropping devices, according to IRNA. They have been arrested and charged with espionage.

The reaction to the report on Tehran’s streets was varied – from disbelief to assigning guilt for the alleged infraction.

"No, I had not heard about this, but it does not surprise me, foreign countries are always meddling in Iran," said Hassan Mohmmadi, a fast-food vendor.

Mohammadi asked me if I knew where the squirrels were from, and I told him that I didn’t know. Then he came to his own conclusions. "I bet they were British squirrels, they are the most cunning," he replied.

The Blur has learned that the squirrels are in fact from Britain and are a part of the SAS (Super Army Squirrels). The photo above shows the squirrels training for the mission into Iran.

U.K. officials have yet to release a statement on the incident or comment on any possible release/rescue of the squirrels.

This marks the second time this year that Iran has taken British soldiers captive.

Full Story

Thanks for the tip Al!

Friday, July 20, 2007

New York Pictures

Check this post on Saturday 7/21. I'll be updating it with photos from this month's 24 hr trip.

New Cleveland Blur HQ

Cleveland is a nice place and all but sometimes you need a change of scenery. I hope to procure this man made island, which was built as a fort then turned into a hotel, as the new Blur HQ.

Even though the island is located in the UK I'll still keep an eye on what is going on in the Cleveland area. Plus when I get over there I'll be able to see if that bird's theory on the UK Coke holds water.

Update: I made an offer on the island and should know soon if I am the lucky owner. By the way the island's new name will be Fort Awesome.

Via OhGizmo!

What's Happening. (Weekend of 07/20)

All kinds of good stuff is going on this weekend. In fact I wrote up a nice post to give everyone the heads up. It was one of the greatest posts ever, hilarious descriptions, awesome photos and useful info on the events.

Unfortunately no one will ever see it thanks to this piece of crap blogger interface. When I added the pictures the formatting went to hell and after countless seconds of trying to fix it I just decided to delete it and give you this worthless piece of shit post instead.

If I can ever be cured of my laziness I'll get this blog ported over to word press so I can rock some CSS formating.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Man Builds Huge Lego Aircraft Carrier - France Surrenders

Man, I thought the U.S.S. Flagg was an awesome toy but this blows it out of the water.

With over 200,000 pieces and real working lights (no word on if it is nuclear powered) it took Malle Hawking a year to build this monster.

I really hope Lego offers this as a set some day.

Full Story and more Pictures.

Monday, July 16, 2007

New Badass in Town

Just when I thought Dale Rippy was the toughest son of a bitch around I stumbled on to this story.

Ex-Marine kills bear with log. Yeah, you read that correctly. Chris Everhart (not pictured) and his 3 sons were camping when a 300 pound black bear tried to steal their cooler full of food.

Six year old Logan threw a shovel at the bear and the bear turned his attention to the young boy. Fearing what might happen next, the ex-Marine grabbed the closest thing he could find, a log.

"I threw it at it and it happened to hit the bear in the head," Chris Everhart said. "I thought it just knocked it out but it actually ended up killing the bear."

Chris was given a ticket for failing to secure his camp site. I don't know about that, if there are some more logs handy it sounds pretty secure to me.

Full Story

Badass Old Man Kills a Bobcat With Bare Hands!

Dale Rippy 62, a resident of Wesley Chapel, Florida is not someone you want to mess with.

This guy stumbled on to a bobcat going through his garbage. The large cat growled at him then attacked.
Rippy said he knew if he could get a good hold on the animal, he would be able to choke it, even if that meant letting the bobcat take a couple of bites.

“I started choking it when got a good hold,” he said. “I choked it ‘til he died. I got scratched up pretty good.”

Rippy never had to go to the hospital, but was examined at a doctor’s office due to puncture wounds on his stomach and scratches.


Full Story

Disgruntled Cell Phone Customer Goes on Rampage.

A man went on a rampage with a stolen armored personnel carrier through suburban Sydney on 7/14, crashing into several mobile phone towers, telecommunications buildings and an electricity substation before being arrested.

The armored personnel carrier was from a company called A-One Lift Truck Services in the town of Minchinbury, and was popular with students hiring it for school formals, The Sydney Morning Herald reported.

The report did not mention who his cell phone provider is but I totally feel this guy's pain.

Full Story
Click through and check out the video, it is awesome.

Quake Rocks Japan

At least 6 people killed and a neuclear reactor is leaking after a 6.8 magnitude earthquake hits off the north-western coast of the main island of Honshu.

Smoke billowed for hours from a blaze at a nuclear power plant, one of the largest in the world, which supplies electricity to the Tokyo region.

A spokesman for the company operating the plant says water containing some radioactive materials leaked after the quake.

Officials are concerned that the contaminated water could cause mutations in the in the island,s large population of lizards. If the mutations are severe enough the lizards could become gigantic and pose a threat to the entire region. See the artist concept drawing.

Full Story

Tiger Attack at the San Antonio Zoo

A keeper who was attacked by a tiger at the city's zoo improved to stable condition Sunday, a hospital official said.

Jeff Tierney, 28, who specializes in large cats and has worked at the San Antonio Zoo for five years and is still in intensive care as of Sunday.

He was alone in the tiger exhibit with the animal, named Berani, when the attack occurred, Dawn Campos a zoo official said. The exhibit is separated from visitors by a moat and bars, but several people witnessed the attack.

The Sumatran tiger (Panthera tigris sumatrae) is only naturally found on the Indonesian island of Sumatran and there are 400 - 500 of the animals left. Luckily for Berani there are no plans to kill him.

Full Story
More Tiger Info

This Month's Trip

I decided to go to New York City for this month's 24 Hour Trip. If you remember when I came up with the idea for these trips I said they would I spend no more than 24 hours in the location of the month.

This trip will be well within the 24 hour time frame. I am only scheduled to be on the ground for about 14 hours. I am hoping to have time to see The Statue of Liberty, Times Square, The Empire State Building and stop at Reuben's on Madison the home of the Reuben sandwich of which I am a huge fan.

I'll put up a post Friday night that I will be able to post pictures too during the trip, so check in Saturday for live updates.

Friday, July 13, 2007

What's Happening. (Weekend of 07/13)

Not too much cracking on Friday, there is a Tribe game with fireworks. Saturday however is going to be jam packed downtown.

Bob Dylan w/ Jimmie Vaughan feat. Lou Ann Barton - 7/14 - 6:30P - Plain Dealer Pavillion

Tickets and info

Indians v. KC - 7/14 - 7P - Jacobs Field
- Fan Appreciation - Also you can bring clothes donations to benefit the Salvation Army.

Kenny Chesney - 7/14 - 4p - Cleveland Browns Stadium - Also performing, Sara Evans, Sugarland, Pat Green and Brooks & Dunn. I have tickets for this sold out event and an extra one so if anyone wants to attend give me a call. Update: Sold the tickets, sorry suckers.

Friday, July 6, 2007

First 24 Hour Trip Recap

I completed my first 24 Hour Trip and almost everything went as planned. There were a couple of minor snags but nothing that wrecked the trip.

My flight out left right on schedule at 8:56P EST and I lucked out when checking in I noticed that the last row had two empty seats so I changed my seat and had plenty of room.
My plan was to sleep on the way out so I would be well rested when I landed. Unfortunately I did not get any sleep because the flight ran into turbulence about every 20 minutes. The turbulence does not bother me (although some people did not care for it, I saw several people making a b line for the crapper to throw up) what drove me nuts was the jackass pilot ringing that damn bell and telling people to sit down every 20 minutes. I don't know why he did not just "say stay seated until further notice", then I could have gotten some rest.

I landed at 11:20P and was out of the air port and in my car @ 11:40, having no bags is just one of the many advantages of traveling this way. It was still early so I figured I would drive around a bit. I killed about an hour checking out the city it is easy to get around since the streets are in the standard grid format. There are a lot of one way streets but at no point did I think I was lost.

I hit the In N Out burger just before it closed and I have to say those are some good burgers. If you have never tried one I highly recommend it. When I was done eating I drove around a bit more then I found a parking spot without a meter on the street near Fisherman's Wharf which is not too far from where I had to catch the ferry to Alcatraz.

Perfect, I made it made it in plenty of time to catch the boat to the rock. By plenty of time I mean 5 hours early, this is the only part of the trip that kind of sucked. There is not much going on at 3A so I walked around the piers for a couple hours then found a nice bench and read for a couple hours. Luckily Starbucks opened at 6A and I was able to get some coffee to charge me up for the day.

When I finally got in line for the boat to Alcatraz it was around 8:30. I meet a group of people from UK and they were all cool except for one chick that kept whinging about how terrible American food is. She had a particular dislike for the coke (the pop not the drug) us yanks serve. Apparently in the UK they mix some kind of magic coke powder with carbonated water and it tastes much better. Perhaps a future trip will have to be to the UK to test out the pop quality.

Once you get to Alcatraz you have to listen to a speech from one of the park rangers about safety and areas that are off limits. You are then free to go off on your own. You have the option to watch a video about the island but all it is the Discovery channel special, which I already saw so I skipped it. Since I was on the first boat over I should have headed straight to the audio tour since the island was still fairly empty but I decided to go exploring on my own. I thought it was hilarious that they had one broken down buildings simple labeled as "Rubble"(see image below). From the pile of rubble I had a great view of the city. It is only 1.25 miles away and while I know they claim there are strong currents I could easily swim across and escape from Alcatraz.

Click image for larger view.

By the time I got over the audio tour the place was fairly packed. If you are planning to take the tour definitely take the first boat of the day and then once you get there head straight to the audio tour. The tour is very interesting but I would prefer a actual tour guide. With the tour guide you can ask questions and to can talk to the fellow tourist. With the headphones you are kind of in your own world. It takes about 45 minutes and is included with your tour price.

Once I finished exploring Alcatraz I hopped on the boat to Angel Island. Angel Island is a 740 acre state park east of Alcatraz. The island has been many things through out the years, military base, quarantine center and a Chinese immigrant detention center are just a few of them.

I took the tram tour of the island, it lasted about an hour and was nice because they point out everything on the island that you might miss if you just walked around your self. The tour is informative but I would have rather gone off on my own because after the tour I did not have enough time to hike up to the top of the island before the boat back to pier 33 left. The top is only 780 feet high but I would have liked to see the view. If I ever go back, Angel Island will be on my list again and if I am staying for more than 24 hours I'll camp on the island.

When I got back to main land I headed over to pier 39 for lunch. I was amazed at how crowded the entire area was, every restaurant had a line out the door and it was 3P. I eventually found a place, The Sea Lion Cafe, with a short wait so I put my name in for a table. While I was waiting I checked out the menu and was disappointed that they did not have Sea Lion on the menu. I settled for some clam chowder in a sour dough bread bowl instead and it was delicious.

It was around 4P when I finished eating leaving me with about 5 hours to walk around Fisherman's Wharf, hike up to Lombard St. and get over to the Golden Gate bridge. I was able to get all of these done with time to spare. The one thing that was a bitch was getting to Lombard St. since it was a long up hill climb from the piers. I finished my list of things to do and see by 8P giving me plenty of time to head back to the airport and catch my flight home, which took off on time getting me out of town within the 24 hour time frame.

Looking back on this trip I don't really think I'll be able to travel any other way from now on. I had a total blast, it was great meeting people from all over the country/world and it was even more fun telling them I flew in just for the day. Plus I got to see and do everything I wanted to and did not spend much cash in the process. That being said this is not for everyone. I was dead tired by the end of the trip, I was awake for almost 43 hours by the end of it (damned turbulence) and I probably walked close to 30 miles. Also I think this is definitely something you have to do solo. If you are traveling with someone else obviously they will be interested in different things so you will spend more time at each location thus reducing the number of things you can see. Also if you are the kind of person that likes relaxing and well planed out trip this is certainly not for you.

What's Happening. (Weekend of 07/06)

Weird Al Yankovic - 7/6 - 6:30P - Plain Dealer Pavilion
I thought for sure this guy was dead but I guess I was wrong. I don't know if he has new songs but if he does I am sure they are hilarious.

Monday, July 2, 2007

First 24 Hour Trip in the Books

The trip was great, I'll do a full write up later today. Here are some photos for now.

Friday, June 29, 2007

Fair Game

U.S. Declares Bald Eagles No Longer Threatened.

Looks like I'll have to dust off my trusty 2100 classic BB gun next time I make a trip to the park to track down that elusive eagle. Since they are no longer consider endangered I am taking that to mean it is alright to hunt them. Nothing steps up your 4th of July cook out like some roasted bald eagle.

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Thursday, June 28, 2007

What's Happening. (Weekend of 06/29)

I won't be around this weekend since I am trying out that new vacationing trend that been going around 24 Hour Trips but there are still several good events going down.

Cleveland Wine Festival - 6/29 -4p - 10p - 6/30 - 2P -10P - Voinovich Park (Near the Rock Hall)
A portion of the festival’s proceeds will benefit the Bright Side of the Road Foundation. The non-profit organization was founded by Clevelander Barry Winovich to help find a cure for Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), the devastating disease commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s disease.

More Wine Fest Info

Howl At the Moon Wine Tasting - 6/30 - Colonial Beverage - Damn more wine but this one has all you can eat food.

This Saturday evening, taste over 25 wines, listen to live music and check out Chef Robert's hot and cold culinary delights during this all you can eat event. Cost is Only $20

Colonial Beverage
8389 Mayfield Road
Chesterland, Ohio 44026

Cleveland Indians - The tribe is home all weekend and the weather is going to be perfect. I suggest buying the cheapest tickets you can and hang out at the Batter's Eye in center field. It is the bar in the picture and it is a blast during games. I'll be attending Sunday's game.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Grand Prix Recap

The Grand Prix was awesome as always but this year it rocked even more thanks to Blur reader and tipster Brian. He was kind enough to hook me up with great seats and some pit passes. Watching from the pit was great, I was able to get within a few feet of the track.

It was a great day filled with great racing and cold beer. If you did not take my advise and skipped the race you really missed out. Check out the photos and video for a small sample of what you missed. Excuse the quality of the video, it is from my cell phone.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

What's Happening. (Weekend of 06/22)

BBBBQ -6/23 - 4:30P - ? - The beer bash barbeque is this Saturday and everyone is invited for free food, beer and fun. I am not going to reveal the location but if you can figure it out from the photo, good show.

Cleveland Grand Prix - 6/22-6/24 - Hours vary - Open wheel racing screams into Cleveland this weekend.

If you are NASCAR fan don't bother showing up for this race. The cars move much too quickly for you and the races are not fixed.

However if you enjoy fast cars, exciting racing and cold beer this is the event for you.
I went to this race the first time about 10 years ago and I was blown away by the speed of these cars. When they go around turns it looks fake, think of K.I.T.T. turning a corner in turbo pursuit mode and you'll know what I am talking about.

The weather is going to perfect all weekend so get your ass down to the race, track me down and buy me a beer.

Race Info

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Damn Interesting

The headline says it all. I was pointed to this this site a couple weeks ago and I am pissed I did not click through sooner.

I have not done any work in the last two days but it has been well worth it.

Warning if you like your job do not follow this link you will not be working for days.


Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Hostages in Paris

PARIS (AP) — Two armed robbers were holding at least six hostages in a bank robbery south of Paris on Tuesday morning, police and news reports said.

Police said the hold up was at a branch of the Credit Lyonnais bank at Rungis. Television networks said the alert was raised by an employee who managed to escape.

The robbers then made their way to the top of the Eiffel Tower and are said to have wired one of the elevators with a large amount of explosives.

Officials are attempting to contact Superman so he can fling the elevator into space where it can be safely detonated.

Via USA Today

Friday, June 15, 2007

Burried Alive

The citizens of Tulsa, back in 1957, buried a new white and gold Plymouth Belvedere in a nuke-proof concrete vault along with some Tulsa town records and a stash of oil and gasoline. The vault also contains a pack of gum, some cigarettes, a bottle of tranquilizers, and a case of Schlitz beer. It’s been nearly 50 years to the day, and the car is about to be quite literally unearthed.

Check out the link for the full story. Looking at the picture the bunker does not appear to be water proof let alone nuke proof.
Via OhGizmo!

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Piss Off Your Neighbors

Do you have the kind of neighbors that crapify their landscaping with statues of flamingos, trolls, and deer? If so then this is the product for you.

This is a full size replica of a Camarasaurus. This thing is 19' tall, 55' long and tips the scales at 3000 lbs. (assuming my conversions are correct, damned metric system).

The price for all of this prehistoric goodness is only $55,221.58. Only problem is the this is offered by a UK retailer so I imagine shipping cost will be a bastard.

Via Oh Gizmo!
Product Page

Monday, June 11, 2007

Taking to the Sky.

I was planning to take a boat over to Alcatraz on my first 24 hour trip but then I stumbled on to this page.

As you can see from the picture this nut, John Ninomiya, ties himself to a bunch of helium balloon and launches himself into the air.

I would totally like to try this but I am sure it would take a ton of balloons to get my fat ass off the ground.

Friday, June 8, 2007

First Trip - Locked In

My first 24 hour trip is scheduled. I am really squeezing this one in under the wire for the 24 hours stipulation. I land at 11:02P Friday and takeoff at 11:00P Saturday giving me 2 minutes to spare.

I am not going to get a hotel room, I figure I can just bounce around until 9A when my tour starts. I may however rent a car since I can get a crappy one for $30 it will probably be cheaper than cabbing it.

Crazy Brits

Richard Wilson, an absolutely mental artist, has come up with brilliant piece of of "art". Oh and by brilliant I mean total crap.

This dude cut a slice out of a building and stuck a motor on it to make it rotate. The best part is it only cost a million dollars, not counting the increased heating/cooling cost and the cost of the exterminator to get all of the bugs and birds out once the show is over.

Check out the video below. Once you see it in action you might find some meaning in the piece. I know I did it says "Richard Wilson is a bloody buffoon".

Thursday, June 7, 2007

What's Happening. (Weekend of 06/08)

Zippity Zoo Doo - 6/8 - 6P - Yet another zoo event, if you have not noticed by now I like the zoo. This one is pricey and I have never been to it so I don't know if it rocks or not. Tickets run $200 per person so I think I am going to skip it this year. If someone does attend let me know how it is.

Zoo Support - This is not a official event but the weekend weather is supposed to be awesome so get out and walk around the zoo. I'll be there Saturday for sure and I recommend buying a season pass. It only cost $50 and it gets you and a guest in free for a year.

Cavs Finals - The retarded NBA scheduled all of the games with a 9P tip off and none of the games are on a weekend night (Friday/Saturday). There is a game this Sunday 6/10 @ 9P, bullshit.

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Cavs Win!

In case you have not heard the Cavs are advancing to the NBA Finals.

I would like to thank them for a great season and giving me a good reason to party my ass off for at least 4 more games.

iPhone Unboxing and Hands On Review!

Coming soon, hopefully.

I emailed Steve Jobs and asked him if he would send me out an iPhone so I could do a full write up on it. I sent the email yesterday and I am kind of surprised he did not overnight one to me. I am thinking I should have it in the next few days.

Stay tuned.

New Feature! 24 HourTrips.

Starting this month I'll be taking one trip per month to tourist/fun locations around the country (United States only for now, at least until my passport comes in). The thing that will be different about my trips is that, in the spirit of Jack Bauer, I will spend no more than 24 hours at the location of the month.

I figured this would be a good way to check out popular sites without all the fuss of taking time off work, booking hotels, packing bags, renting cars (I should be able to cab it most of the time) and finding restaurants. Plus I am not the kind of guy that needs to stare at something for hours but I would like to see it in person and snap a few pictures.

My first trip will be to Alcatraz. I may be heading out as soon as this Saturday 6/9. I found a flight that gets me to San Fransisco @ 10A and a return flight that leaves @ 11P. I also found a website that will let me book the Alcatraz tour and a 1 hour bay boat tour. I should also have time to stop at the In N Out burger near Jones Street. I know it is on Jefferson St., I said "NEAR Jones St."

Of course I will post my experiences and pictures of the trips and probably let you know if it was worth it. I already have several trip ideas in mind but post your suggestions in the comments.

Thursday, May 31, 2007

What's Happening. (Weekend of 06/01)

Downtown Cleveland will be the place to be this Saturday. The Cavs and the Indians are both playing Detroit at home Saturday. The Indians Start @ 7P and the Cavs @ 8:30P. There will be plenty of pre and post game fun at the bars on 9th, Panini's and The Clevelander are my favorites (see photo). See you down there.

Oh yeah, be careful after the Cavs' game, since it is on TNT Chuck Barkley will be in town and he is known for tossing people through windows.

Monday, May 28, 2007

Bald Eagle -5, Mark - 0

As you may or may not know bald eagles are nesting in Cuyahoga Valley National Park near Station Road Bridge Trailhead. The nest is on the propery of Cleveland Metroparks Brecksville Reservation within the boundary of the national park. For the past couple of weeks I have been trying to get a glimpse of the bird with no success.

The nest area is located 1/2 mile North of the Station Road parking lot. I put together a Google map if you want to check it out for yourself. I am going to keep trying, it has to be very impressive to see a bird with a 7 foot wing span flying around. I'll post pictures if I ever track it down.

Bald Eagle Info
PDF Link

Friday, May 25, 2007

Whales to be Rescued by Hosers

I am not talking about some dorks from Canada but people using fire hoses.

Two humpback whales wandered 70 miles from the Pacific Ocean up the Sacramento River. The two whales, a mother and her calf, became disoriented and are now circling in the river.

Biologists attempted to use sounds of killer whales and clanging pipes to chase the whales back to the ocean with no results. There was no mention of using the sound of Japanese fishing boats but I would guess that would have made the toughest whale turn tail and run.

They are now going to turn fire hoses on the huge mammals to drive them back to the ocean . This is the first time something like this will be attempted and I am willing to bet they got the idea from the Chinese that used the hoses to knock that murderer from his perch.

I hope all goes well and the whales are returned safely to the ocean but I don't see how squirting water at an animal that lives in the water is going to get the job done.

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