Historically, when the sledding gets tough there has been a musical quote up in here. Today I've got some Outkast ("Roses") blasting in the headies and I really wish that I could crank out some IOE homework so that I could get on to some other homeworks and stuff before the day is gone.
Late night last night, not unlike those Webb days when the sun went down and you still had a day's work ahead of you. Grind, plug & chug, crank, all homework-producing terms that also, strangely, pertain to the meat-processing industry. Well I'llll be!
posted at 1:49 PM - comments
Wednesday, September 29, 2004
Got home the other night and needing some brain-rot, I flipped on the TV. Sadly for me, it was on CBC which means that I tuned in to the Paralympics. Chances are good you've not heard anything about the Paralympics if you are an American like me, since the coverage is non-existent. Well in Canada it is a big deal, as well it should be, and their coverage is outstanding. I saw several heats of the women's wheelchair 400m, including the top division where the champ set a world record in about 51.5 seconds. So here's a 30-something woman with no legs who can get around the track in 2.5 seconds less than I could at the height of my track career...and nobody has heard anything about it. At the Olympic Games, US medal count was everything, and we cleaned up. At the Paralympic Games the US is in roughly ninth place behind just about every other G-8 nation. Fabulous. Perhaps somebody ought to say something about this so we can get behind the whole team.
posted at 2:54 PM - comments
Tuesday, September 28, 2004
Career Fair. Corporate propoganda. Southbound Commuter. B-School Library. Naval Architecture team leadership comfortable chairs short meeting. Northbound Commuter. Work. Work. Work. Talk on the telephone; feet on the desk. Tilt chair, swivel chair, wheelie chair. Bike ride home through the dark down the hill watch for deer tussled hair. Icecreamfootballreadabookcleanthedishestimefliesgoodnightsleeptight. Meep! Meep! Lazy. Shower, pack lunch, find clothes, bike ride to class in the sun up the hill watch for geese tussled hair. Big Greek Man. Work. Work. Career Fair. Corporate propoganda. Free hat.
posted at 2:38 PM - comments
Monday, September 27, 2004
Michigan 30, Iowa 17. We missed a PAT, fumbled on the goal line, and had suspect secondary play, but Hart and Henne are coming on line and Braylon is the man. Couple those three with solid line and linebacker play and you're 1-0 in the Big Ten.
Anthony was here to take in the festivities; he spent some time wandering A2 on Friday while I worked and attended a Student Section luncheon here with Charles Cushing giving a talk about maritime casualties. Then over to East Lansing and Robin's apartment, where we sat around while Robin prepped lasagna, headed to the Dairy Store, and then returned to Robin's for an aaaawesome dinner. After eating, Jenelle, Anthony, and I headed to Wharton Center to see Jill in "Oklahoma." Her part was pretty small but it was fun to see her in the show and good to take in some culture. We met up afterwards and Robin joined us for dessert and socializing that lasted until about 1. Then back to Ann Arbor in time for bed.
Saturday was more wandering in A2, this time in the name of getting to Michigan Stadium by 3:30 for kickoff. We made it in plenty of time, saw (and heard) the bands play, and took in a pretty good football game, complete with blimp overhead, several highlight-reel plays, and 111,428 in attendance. Afterwards, we trekked back to my place for burgers and corn and "Tommy Boy." Then, Anthony and I drove back downtown to Scorekeeper's for a little more socializing.
Sunday was a laid-back day, with a late start, breakfast at a diner, some football, and a trip to DTW filling time before I headed back to NAME for another presentation and plenty of work that filled the night.
After a ThursDAY that should have been more productive, I had a ThursNIGHT that was pretty fun. After IOE441 I bussed it down to the MHL for a little student section barbeque. That didn't last too long, so I headed home and then out on about a 10 mile ride around Gallup Park and up to the Survival Flight helipad to see what I could see. Not much was going on, so I went back to HQ, had a dip in the pool, and trucked up to the office. From there, I zipped south and then east to DTW to collect Anthony, then we went to the Diamondback Saloon to meet up with a pretty good sized group of NAME-ees. We had some wings, caught up on the doings in our lives and stuff, and mingled with the assembled Michigan crowd. Pretty fun introduction to the department's social scene.
posted at 11:27 AM - comments
Thursday, September 23, 2004
In all the midweek monotony of yesterday I forgot to mention that it's officially fall. In theory I've observed the autumnal equinox every year of my life, but somehow this one seems a bit more important. Trees in south Michigan are hinting at the beginning of fall color season, which is amazing given that nearly three weeks ago the UP trees were celebrating Labor Day by starting their turn.
Late night last night as I took care of final details at home after an IOE 441 meeting at Markley - straightening the art that was hung in the morning, cutting and tinning speaker wires, trimming plants, doing dishes, exactly the domestic tasks that didn't even exist during my U.G. career. Then when all was ready to go I knocked off and read the final 50 pages or so of The Goal. Now it is Thursday, Anthony arrives in a shade over 9 hours, and life is busy once again.
posted at 10:59 AM - comments
Wednesday, September 22, 2004
It's been a quiet week (thus far) in Lake Wobegon, with my first group meetings and first huge, ginormous project assigned and time already ticking. It's funny to contrast the Webb group meeting and the UMich group meeting. Let's workshop: suppose you are in a four-person group at Webb. All your groupmates will be in your class, have an identical background. Contact them by yelling across the dining hall. Meet in the library. Use free laptop, free printing, etc. to improve productivity. Now suppose you are in a four-person group at Michigan. One groupmate has dropped the class but you don't know that. You have three classes represented and two totally different backgrounds. The good news is you can contact everybody by jumping online and creating an email address just for your group. The bad news is that once everybody has agreed to meet (and when) you'll have to take the bus to get there, bring your laptop because the lab will be full, and watch out because you can't print wirelessly. I guess the moral to this rambling is two-fold; groups work better when you are in a close setting, and blogging is an excellent diversion from NA562 homework.
Pretty? No. Fundamentally sound? No. Effective? Barely. Such was Michigan's 24-21 edging of San Diego State on Saturday under the hot sun at Michigan Stadium. It was my introduction to Big House football, and it was crazy. It's really weird to have a visualization of 109,432 people, but it's also amazing how noisy 30,000 can be and how quiet 80,000 can be. Think about that: the equivalent of Spartan Stadium sitting calmly doing essentially nothing to cheer on the team while the northwest corner of the country's largest athletics venue tries to push the Maize and Blue over the top. At times during Saturday's game we could actually hear the Aztec faithful whooping it up from under the far scoreboard...an embarassment if you ask me.
The weekend was a good one; Friday was a blend of CPC reading and frenetic errands and house work, then in the evening Jenelle and I took the bus downtown to scope out the evening life in Ann Arbor on a perfect night before a home football game. After the game on Saturday we returned to Huron Towers and hit the pool (the water was 89 degrees F, if you can believe it) and basically crashed for the evening, exhausted from cheering and standing and walking and the week gone by.
posted at 1:20 PM - comments
Friday, September 17, 2004
There's no football like Big House football, or so they say. I'll know in a shade over 24 hours and man am I pumped. Yesterday after IOE441 I went for a pretty nice little bike ride around A2 and found out that you can see, from the downtown stretch of Main Street, the north scoreboard at Michigan Stadium. So cool. Back at home, I made high after the sun went down, arranging and cleaning and setting up and tearing down at a feverish pace ahead of this weekend and next. That means that between the past few days the CPC has gotten neglected a tad, which means that this afternoon and alllllll of Sunday are going to be chalked up to contingency-induced fun.
Thursday today, my second week of classes has nearly reached its close, and I feel now like I'm ramping back up toward full academic production. Last night was a late one, by current standards, full of forecasting homework (there's a misplaced modifier in there; I was doing homework regarding forecasting, not predicting upcoming homework) and reading Eli Goldratt and wishing like crazy that Michigan could get just 1/15th or so of the winds from Hurricane Ivan. My apartment is starting to feel like a refuge from my desk in NAME 137, so working there felt a little weird, but it was good to get out of the chair here when I departed after class.
posted at 1:40 PM - comments
Wednesday, September 15, 2004
I'm back with more musings - blogs are perfect for that.
Plenty of thoughts today about the so-called war on terror. The Bush-Cheney billboards in the Lansing area brought this on, with their insistence that the current administration could 'fight the war on terror' or some such thing. Terror is a tough thing to fight; it seems to me that rather than trying to sniff out and prevent attacks and attackers (the act of terrorism) we ought to be focusing our efforts on the ideals behind terrorism. There are always going to be haters, but it seems like we can prevent the cultivation of these attitudes if we don't act like haters ourselves. Imagine if, rather than spending over $100b on a war, we had used that money as aid around the world. We could have built up - rather than totally obliterated - the global post-9/11 goodwill towards the U.S. As Kerry points out, we need to be respected abroad, and this notion of boots before flip-flops is NOT how that is going to get done.
posted at 2:49 PM - comments
ADD is setting in - yet another gorgeous afternoon in Ann Arbor. Inside the NAME building on North Campus we've been all about ships and shipping, about design for production and forecasting the need for ships and inventory to build them. Heady times, perhaps, but I just wanna go out-siiiiiiii-de!
Nice night last night; had a pleasant meal on the patio at Clara's and then put together some more furniture from this weekend's foray.
Decision 2004 is starting to make me highly irritable. I keep watching This Land to try and keep my spirits up, but I was watching the news last night and have been reading editorials in the Michigan Daily most lunch hours and I am going to level - I could get a job abroad. People are so wrapped up in "issues" that nobody has stopped to point out to both sides of this thing that many of the issues should not, nay CAN NOT, be issues at all due to their Constitutional irrelevance under our current system. If you want to ban gay marriage or stem cell research or abortion, shouldn't an overthrow of the government be a necessary step?
On a related note, I have gained some closure from, of all places, the Daily Press. Upon reading yesterday's Nalgene abomination and with some help from an alert reader, I discovered what is happening to the fabric of our land: it's being deteriorated by the chemicals leaching from these all-popular containers. As said alert reader quipped, didn't the Romans have a similar problem with their trendy new water-transporting device, aka lead pipe?
posted at 1:53 PM - comments
Monday, September 13, 2004
Good weekend here, excepting the Varsity's loss in South Bend. Luckily for me and my cardiac health, I wasn't home to watch the devastation set in. Since it seemed the perfectly normal thing to do, Jenelle and I headed southeast on Saturday to IKEA. It was fun - road trips and contemporary furniture are two of my favorite things that seldom, nay, rarely happen - and the end result is a styling, finished apartment. I got some blazin' chairs and a coffee table and a little patio table for my enormous balcony...boy am I stoked. It would have been nice to pick this stuff up 18 months ago, when I needed chairs and wound up going the "stopgap" route at some unnecessary expense. But I digress; all that remains at home is to hang pictures and figure out the lighting situation in my bedroom.
On the other end of the commercial spectrum, I parted ways with my iPod last night and will do the same with my RTA desk tonight. U-M runs a very effective e-posting board for the sale of such things and it's nice to be able to generate some cash from the disposal of such things as the desk.
Now to some humor from the original hometown newspaper, Escanaba's Daily Press. Slow news weekend apparently, as the headline for Monday reads "Nalgene bottles popular in the area." Top that, fictional newsource The Onion!
Finally, a picture from the balcony looking skyward as one of three Survival Flight Bell 430s returns to UMHS hospital.
Today has been a reading day, interrupted briefly by a trip to Bursley to swap football tickets and for lasagna lunch courtesy "the Department." It was about 80 degrees and sunny and Midwest perfect outside the NAME building and the UM hospital helicopter flew overhead with the block M visible on the underside of the fuselage. It seemed like the ultimate convergence of big and small in one happy, food-based event.
posted at 2:50 PM - comments
Thursday, September 09, 2004
Another semi-easy day at U-M. Had another great class this morning (to go hand-in-hand with the NA562 last evening) about shipping economics...NA580 The gravy with these two courses is that I already have the primary textbooks. Whooopee!
The rest of the day has been fun, too. After lunch at home I hopped on the T2k and rode down to Central Campus to check out FestiFall and sign up for a ton of clubs' email lists and get fliers regarding mass meetings. Would you believe (I suppose I would, too, if I had gone to a bigger UG school) that there is a ski club AND a ski team, a cycling club, a waterski club and a waterski team, an outdoor club, a paddling club, and an adventure travel club? I mean seriously a little bit more overlap would almost be a good thing. As much fun as it sounds to join all the organizations, it's madness to think that I can pony up the time and funds to participate in all of these things. I bet that if I started the EveryClub club to visit each other club's event once a year, it'd be a big hit.
Other news today that could have an impact on my future. Michigan Business School is no more - with a gift of $100,000,000 it has now transformed itself into the Stephen Ross School of Business. I'm all about the big gifts and stuff, but I do kind of like the straight-up old-schoolness of "Michigan Business School." Either way, you have to get in before it matters all that much.
Finally today, an image taken by Jenelle from the passenger window of the Jimmy as we rolled southward on Monday. Happy Labor Day, so long U.P., hoooooray ships!
The U.P. for Labor Day. Classic. "It's God's country" they say...don't even get me started, but it is nice to be there for a summery weekend of boating and skiing and camping and visiting and the Dairy Flo and driving the Chevelle. Strange to be a member of the great southern horde come Friday afternoon and again on Monday; we sat at the Straits of Mackinac for 2 hours before getting over the bridge. At center span we drove directly over Edwin H. Gott, whose deck was visible only through the steel grating of the roadway. Cool stuff. Jenelle took a picture or two from the window of the Jimmy and I suppose I'll post those sometime.
Back in A2, I've been running around like crazy. Joined a bank, got wireless working, got an email notifying me that my first class isn't until tomorrow, cleaned, read, and tonight that greatest of adventures (unpacking) will continue.
posted at 1:10 PM - comments
Friday, September 03, 2004
Holy Hiatus Batman! So I've taken a week off, this is a pro bono excersize anyway. But here's a rundown on the runs-around of the past week.
Driving: Lots of driving, including 1233 miles in a 16' Penske van pulling the Jimmy on a car carrier. It went incredibly smoothly and we arrived in Ann Arbor (AA, A2, or my fave, A-deuce) around 5pm on Saturday last. From there Dad headed home, I headed to Lansing, and the week began in earnest.
Moving: In addition to all of the packing that I did (with plenty of help from Dad) in SRQ, I also had a heap of UNpacking to do here at Huron Towers. This devoured much time, even with 5 hours of help from Jenelle and Robin on Monday night. But, the mess in 409b has subsided and that is nice.
Apartment: Pretty trick. It's not big, but the light is abundant, windows everywhere, and balcony palatial. I have a good view of the surrounding area, although somewhat abbreviated by the VA hospital, which looms to my north.
Orientation: Goodness, am I ever oriented. I've never been so oriented in my life. In point of fact the usefulness of these orientations is not that high, but between the three of them I got 5 free meals, which is cool. The NAME departmental one on Thursday was worthwhile, but really I should probably have just skipped the College of Engineering and Rackham events in favor of moving in and sleeping and reading.
GSRA: This week was a bit of an early start for my GSRA. I met Professor Dr. Thomas Lamb, who seems cool. We talked stuff over and I got a feeling for the lay of the land as to the CPC project and he even offered some suggested reading, so I dug into that somewhat and will likely be doing more of that on the rides north and south if possible.
That's the skinny before a weekend of swimming and skiing and UP fun. Then it's back for the first day of classes, book buying, laptop wireless troubleshooting, and hopefully some picture posting.
posted at 1:10 PM - comments