Wednesday, July 13, 2011


Yesterday a friend at work (back in temperate SoCal) asked if I was in the "heatopocalypse". The answer is yes:

Again, it's the humidity. Not only does it feel like someone opened a massive pizza oven door but the humidity is so thick, it's almost choking--like walking through water.

I wish there was a word for a sweating version of puking--sweating where it's just uncontrollable, you keep praying for a break or relief, and you just want to hide indoors with the shades drawn. Because I'd use that word all the time right now.

Man, I'm so tired of swuking.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Please tell me you're watching the Women's World Cup

Tomorrow are the Semi-Finals for the FIFA Women's World Cup, though I'll say it's a bit annoying that both games are one after another on a weekday.

The Semi finals are featuring Sweden vs. Japan and then USA vs. France. 

Did anybody watch the quarterfinal games?  Unfortunately I only caught the USA vs. Brazil game, but it was Amaze Balls.  It was fraught with craziness like a USA goal in the first 2 minutes of the game, made by Brazilian player, Daiane.  Then, a USA player was red-carded and ejected.  And soon after, there was a weird Penalty Kick do-over that scored Brazil its own goal, tying the score 1-1.  And so USA was down to 10 players as they headed into overtime.  Here is where I say again, there is a TON of running in this game.  And I mean RUNNING.  Holy cow--two 45 minute halves and no commercial breaks.  And now overtime--two 15 minutes halves.  That is 2 hours of running.  I swear I lost weight just watching this game.

Brazil scored quickly with a pretty sweet goal (though apparently someone was offsides but wasn't called) and it looked look 5-time FIFA World Player of the Year Marta and her Brazil team were heading towards the Semis.  But at the 122 minute mark (extra time added for injury), USA scored a BEAUTIFUL goal tying it to 2-2.  Did I mention that USA was down to 10 players? 

It went down to penalty kicks.  Each team made the first 3 goals, then the USA goalie stopped a score from Daiane (yes, the one who had kicked a goal for the USA in the first 2 minutes), opening the way for USA to win out on penalty kicks, 5-3.  Needless to say, it was a super game from start to finish.

If you like competitive sports on a world professional level, I suggest you set your DVRs.

Friday, July 8, 2011


We went to Carowinds to meet up with Paul's cousin and family. The amusement park straddles the border between North and South Carolina.

On the plus side, it wasn't very crowded at all and there were hardly any lines for the rides. On the minus--it was pretty hot and humid, which may explain the plus side:

Fortunately, not only was this family super sweet but they LOVE adventure and crazy rides:

Unlike the wiener on the right below, who pretty much can no longer handle any rides made for those over 48 inches:

On a side note, my friend told me I have the worst photography posture lately--for some reason, I'm so slouchy. She said the secret is to do what Paul is doing--putting a hand on the hip. The proof is obvious--gotta remember that tip!

Even though we were pretty much soaking from our sweat, they went on Whitewater Falls and totally got drenched:

And there were a bunch of other rides they went on, including the Scream Weaver and some other roller coasters, but I think the girl appreciated the low key mellowness of this Yo Yo swing ride (like how they all took their shoes off?):

Rain and lightning closed the rides down around 8:30 and we headed out. But we went and had Chinese food together and got to catch up--which was this amusement park wiener's favorite part.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Annoyingly sick

Don't you hate colds that become lingering coughs? Ugh, shook the cold for the most part, but have an annoying cough that is shaking my ribs... Wish I could just sleep until it's all over...

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

July 4: Columbia Blowfish

For July 4th, we decided to check out the local baseball team, the Columbia Blowfish. They play in the Coastal Plain League, which is a collegiate wood-bat summer league that plays in North Carolina, South Carolina, and Virginia, though the players can come from all over. I think in some ways this league is supposed to help college players transition to playing with wood bats in the professional leagues. What's kind of nice about a local baseball team is there really isn't a bad seat in the house:

Though my favorite part has to be the mascot, "Blowie", here running the bases:

Though I think I enjoyed the dance he and "Blowie Junior" did to the "Jump On It" chorus of Sugarhill Gang's "Apache" between innings even more. As you can see, we had our pick of seats:

Mascot heaven:  here are "Blowie" and "Pockets" mascot for sponsor Palmetto Hospital getting ready to lead the kids' run in the outfield:

And the capper:  fireworks!

Oh yes, and the Columbia Blowfish beat the Florence Red Wolves 7-6!

Monday, July 4, 2011

Happy 4th!

We got an early start on the Independence Day festivities by visiting our friends who just moved to the good ol' South East yesterday.  Not only was there good food to be had, but also a home fireworks show:

I've never been one to light a ton of fireworks when I was younger and when they brought this guy out, I nearly ran for cover.  I wish I had put something next to it for scale because this thing looked like it was bought straight from Wile E. Coyote himself.  It was about two feet tall and at least a foot in diameter.  All it needed was the skull & crossbones with a bunch of Xs on it:

But I do confess that it made for impressive fireworks:

Afterward, the kids handled the non-explosive Sparklers:

Happy 4th everyone!

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Fashion show AKA mini Project Runway

The clothing workshop turned out to be mini version of Project Runway for the girl--starting on the first day where they went to a fabric store and had a budget to pick out fabric for their sundress. The girl said they even waved, "Goodbye House of Fabrics!" like they do when the contestants shop at Mood on Project Runway. And yesterday, she said they were counting down, just like on the show, where she was panicking she wouldn't finish in time for the runway show:

She said she had to rush the hem, did a last-minute sash, and realized it was too short to wear as a dress, but we thought she did a great job:

And as you can surmise from us non-runway folks:

Columbia was celebrating the USC Gamecocks' winning the College World Series, bringing back-to-back national championships to Columbia! There was a parade the same day and the local froyo place had a featured flavor:

And anyone wearing Gamecock gear got a 25% discount

Garnet Velvet and Vanilla with Strawberries & Blackberries & Mango Juice Balls

Now that's the way I like to celebrate...deliciously.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Jazz night

Last night, we were able to catch one of Paul's colleague's son guest on the sax at Jazz Night at the Hunter-Gatherer.

My exposure to jazz is extremely and I guess, embarrassingly, limited. As is my recognition of the really good sections--it's kind of like listening to a rallying song in a foreign country and you kind of cheer when everyone else does--but in my classic "fake it till you make it" style, I definitely clapped when everybody else started applauding during a solo or I'm assuming, a thoroughly intricate jazzy riff.

That said, I was really impressed by our friend's son--at 14, not only was he pretty darn good, his appreciation and passion for jazz were sweetly contagious.