Wednesday, June 29, 2005

This week's fortune.

It is always darkest just before the dawn.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Get well soon, momma!

My mother had arthroscopic surgery on her ankle this morning. The prognosis is that she'll be sidelined for about 6 to 8 weeks. Here's to a speedy recovery! After all, I need someone to cook for me...

Swingers Softball Recap (6/27/05)

The Swingers broke out of a 3 game losing streak, beating Master Batters by a 16-6 mark on Monday night, despite playing without All Stars Jarrod Ross and Erik Gutierrez. Ross and Gutierrez are both serving suspensions for violating the league's new substance abuse policy, and it is unclear when either will return.
While Ross refused to comment, Gutierrez pleaded his innocence in a press conference before Monday's game. "My lawyers and I agree, what the league found in my urine sample was cattle steroids. I ate at Outback the night before the game, and that's how it got in my system." Commisioner Bud Selig is unconvinced. "We will pursue the maximum penalty," he said. It is rumored that Ross may flee the country and join the German Women's Swim Team rather than face a suspension.
Faced with the loss of their two marquee players the Swingers called up reinforcements from AAA Monkey's Eyebrow, NM. Adam Tsacoumangos's contract was purchased from the Poo Flingers of the Pacific Coast League, and Lindsay Mendro, already on the 40 man roster, was called up. Both made big impacts in their major league debuts. Tsacoumangos was 2-3 with a homerun and 3 RBI's, while Mendro was the first female to play left field and not allow a ball to pass her on the ground all season. She also contributed a 2 RBI single in the first inning.
The story of the night for the Swingers was their 12 run first frame, in which they scored their first 7 runs without the benefit of a hit. 8 of the first 10 batters walked to start the inning, and the Red Devils never looked back. Eric Ridenhour was credited with the victory for his two innings of work in which he allowed 6 runs, but the story on the mound was Jason Brunick, who came on in relief and tossed 3 shutout innings while walking just 1 batter. "He was working both sides of the plate, changing speeds, keeping hitters off balance," said manager Christine Aylward, who also caught Brunick. The outting lowered Brunick's ERA to 8.75, making him the only Swinger pitcher with an ERA under 18.
Defensively the Swingers sparkled, playing their first error free game of the year. Brunick helped himself out of a jam in the 4th inning by gunning down a runner at home with the bases loaded, and Brian McChesney added a nifty stab on a scorching linedrive down the first base side. Even when things went poorly for the Red Devils they managed to make plays. Bobbi "The General" Closser appeared to have caught a weak line drive in the 5th inning, but with typical Confederate flair, she dropped the ball. However, short shortstop Dan Higa was backing up on the play. Higa pounced on the loose ball, pivoted on one knee, and threw a strike to Amber Moodie-Dyer who was alertly covering second for a fielders choice.
With the season entering the home stretch the Swingers still have an oppurtunity to make a run. Several players have been turning in solid performances, and even without Ross and Gutierrez, the Red Devils can still field a solid Lineup. Jamaal Granger continues to produce offensively, leading the team in hits with 9 and runs scored with 10. Melanie Ureta, an offseason acquisition, has also paid handsome dividends. Ureta leads all women with 9 runs scored and 4 RBI. Two players quietly putting together solid years are Bobbi "The General" Closser and Dan Higa. Closser is hitting .444, while Higa ranks in the team's top 3 in every major offensive category. Ron Sturm has also stepped up. Despite a .222 average, Sturm has driven in 6 runs.
Tsacoumangos and Mendro join Katie Stemmler as the team's 3 rookie callups. When asked about their prospects to stick with the big club, manager Aylward said, "We're always looking for oppurtunities to improve our ballclub. Katie has done a good job for us since she's been here, and I'm sure we can find some at bats for Adam. We're still not sure what we want to do with Lindsay." It is unclear whether the Swingers will accept a Cubs fan on the roster. "I don't trust any Northsider fan," commented Higa, "The bad vibes from 97 years of losing could put us in an even deeper hole." Other members of the team were also skeptical. "I'm sure she won't fit in," said Kristen Babb. Jerico Collins added, "She'll bring the curse of the billy goat with her. Mark my words." Collins, however, had reason to celebrate after notching his first big league hit. "It's a huge weight off my shoulders," Said Collins.
The Swingers have a bye for the holiday weekend, and take the field again on July 11th against Mike Duffy's. Good seats still remain, call the Swinger's ticket office today!

- Dan Higa

Swingers season statistics.

Sunday, June 26, 2005

Dust Tour 2K6.

Next year's vacation destination is a romp through Greece and Italy.

Here's who's in so far...
For sure: Me, Andy Maxwell.
Probably: Jarrod Ross, Greg Wilcox.
Adam Tsacoumangos, Andy's friend.

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Monday, June 20, 2005

The purpose of falling is to get back up.

(that was paraphrased from Batman Begins)

First, I hurt my ankle playing soccer yesterday. I went to pivot and make a pass, and I felt a pop in my left ankle. Thankfully, the x-ray today was was just a ligament strain. I think I'll only be on the DL for a couple of weeks, at most.

Then, I crashed my desktop computer
today after attempting to add 1 GB of RAM to the 512 MB that was already installed. After discovering that a house call from the Geek Squad would cost at least $150, I decided to troubleshoot the problem myself. After much searching and nearly giving up, I determined that I had fried one of the memory modules...thankfully it was only a 256 MB one.

Saturday, June 18, 2005

Missed it by that much.

I posted a personal best (out of all 2 races I've run) of 29:17 in the Komens St. Louis Race for the Cure 5K this morning. This was 17 seconds slower than my goal. I guess I need to train harder...or start training...

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

This week's fortune.

Others are anxious to get to know you better.

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Swingers Softball Recap 6/6/05

Monday night was an oppurtunity for the Swingers. Newly bolstered by the return of all star Erik "K" Gutierrez, and facing a weak Mikey Duffy's team, the Red Devils were in a perfect position to grab a win and perhaps gain some momentum. Instead, they squandered it away. The Swingers got acceptable pitching and played solid defense, but for the second straight game failed to get the offense into gear, losing 12-2.
The story of the evening was the return of "K" Gutierrez from a knee injury suffered in the off season. When asked before the game what "K's" return meant to the Swingers, manager Christine Aylward said this, "'K' is great on both sides of the ball, defensively and offensively. I think his return is the spark this team needs." Unfortunately for the Swingers, it was not to be. While "K" played his usual solid defense in left center field, he managed only an 0-3 at the plate, flying out to the warning track in all three at bats. "They made me get off the juice for my rehab," said "K," "Now that I'm healthy again I can start bulking back up with a little help from my trainer and his products." When asked to comment on his teammate's apparent lack of power, Eric "C" Ridenhour commented, "He just got back on the drugs, give them some time to work." Manager Aylward would not comment when asked about her players and steroid use.
The Red Devils were forced to go with emergency pitcher Jamaal Granger to start the contest, due to the late arrival of scheduled starter "C" Ridenhour, and the departure of Jason Brunick to attend to personal matters. Granger had some pitching experience from last year, and did an admirable job filling in for the Swingers. He allowed 8 runs in his 3 innings of work, while striking out 1 and walking 4. "I didn't feel quite comfortable on the mound," Granger said afterwards, "I was just trying to keep us in the game, and make my pitches when I had to." The Red Devils stepped up defensively to help Granger, with "K" Gutierrez making several nice plays in left center field, and Obi Orjih laying out to make a diving stop on a line drive in the 3rd inning. Although the umpire called an out on the catch, Orjih made the throw to first base just to be sure. It was Orjih's first good throw to first all year. "I wasn't thinking about it, I just reacted," commented the shortstop. The same could not be said of short shortstop Dan Higa, who replaced Orjih in the 4th inning. Higa's throwing error in the 5th kept the inning alive long enough to allow Duffy's to score their final 3 runs.
Offensively the Swingers had few bright spots, but among them was Jarrod "J-Rod" Ross's second home run of the season, a blast that traveled 458 feet to the power alley in left center field. "I was just looking for a pitch to drive," commented "J-Rod," "He threw me a fastball up, and I hammered it." When asked for comment "K" Gutierrez said, "Obviously he's still on the juice." Christine "Awkward" Aylward also showed some signs of life, collecting her second hit in as many games. "Awkward" had been in an 0 - 6 slump before her recent hitting streak. "I'm starting to see the ball better," commented Aylward. Also encouraging were Amber Moodie-Dyer's two walks, improving her on base percentage to .500, despite flailing at an ugly pitch in the 3rd. However, Moodie-Dyer is still one of 4 Swingers who are hitless on the season.
Looking for any way to spark her team, manager Aylward has introduced 6 awards to be handed out at the end of the season. Male and Female awards will be handed out for Gold Glove, Silver Slugger (best hitter) and MVP, along with other miscellaneous awards to be announced in the future. Upon hearing this announcement, competition in the clubhouse quickly erupted. "Nobody on this team hits better than I do," stated "J-Rod," "At least the rest of us can spell our names," responded Bobbi "The General" Closser. Award winners will be chosen by team voting.
The Swingers will look to get back on track next Monday night against Office Average, the only team they've defeated this year. First pitch is at 8:30pm, and good seats still remain! Call the Swinger's ticket office today.

- Dan Higa

Swingers season statistics.

This week's fortune.

You find beauty in ordinary things, do not lose this ability.

Saturday, June 04, 2005

Eurotrip 2005.

A log of my recent trip to Europe can be found here. Enjoy.

Extra ticket for Coldplay.

I have an extra ticket to see Coldplay in concert at the UMB Bank Pavilion on Saturday, September 17 at 8:00 PM. Let me know if you are interested.