Monday, December 22, 2008

Whispers


No riding for over a week now, as the snow and ice present a formidable barrier. But, lots of walks with the Brown Dog, including the trek down the hill to the OLA. Recently, I was walking up the trail to Kite Hill in the snow, and noticed a man with a long beard and two dogs descending. All dogs were off leash. As is the custom, we both stopped to make sure that the impending canine convention would be friendly. When we met, we talked about the weather and the snow, remarking that such a snowfall was uncommon in Seattle. The other dog owner mentioned that he was from Corvallis, Oregon, and in town to go to Fred Hutch. Yes, another cancer patient. He said that this had ‘not been on the radar,’ and was truly grateful just to walk his dogs on a snowy day at Magnuson.

Matt wrote that Dana was starting her chemotherapy early.

C told me that one of the beloved Moms in our group had been diagnosed with breast cancer.

I can't help but wonder who is next. Is this the plague that we endure for living in these times?

The list goes on and on. I’m glad that I’ve signed up for Livestrong, and am so thankful for the friends and family who’ve donated so far.

Now, for the melt sometime soon so getting back on the bike doesn’t mean dodging the ice and snow.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

No riding today?


Snow, ice and cold temps were the order of the day, and not many were out on the BGT this morning when the Brown Dog and I hiked down to the OLA.

Instead of riding today, I added to my 2009 goals by signing up as a member of Team Fatty for the Livestrong Challenge next June 21. Lisa and Mallory's participation in the Breast Cancer walk, as well as Tony, Mary-Pat, Lynn, Dana, and many others all inspired my decision to raise a bit of money and ride 100 miles next Father's Day.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

High Sierra

As long as we are in the dreaming mode, this trip looks very interesting.....

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Fog and the Peace Park

Days are short, the weather is disagreable, and schedules are nuts, so once a week on the bike is about all I can do this fall. This morning was a foggy, damp yet warm. Rode along the Seattle Marathon route for a bit, then through Myrtle Edwards Park, Locks and back. 25 miles or so.

Crossed over the University Bridge, and stopped at the Seattle Peace Park, covered with paper cranes, perhaps in response to the awful news from Mumbai this week, reported via tweets and flickr posts from those on the scene. Social media goes mainstream, scoops the standard news sources, with all the problems of perspective and analysis that go with eyewitness accounts.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Sunday Morning Go For a Ride


38 miles around the north end of the lake on the morning of the first frost in the area, and it was clear, crisp and dry. The knees hurt a little, and another bike fit may be in order, but all the working parts functioned well. Good to get some of the bees out of the bonnet after the discussion of budget cuts, RIF's, buyouts, etc. at the Learning Factory.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

2009 Goals

Is "Goal" too harsh a word? Maybe wish list is better, but here goes....

NYC Century - Sunday, September 13th

RAGBRAI - July 19 - 25

America's Most Beautiful (Ride Around Tahoe) - June 7, 2009, or September 6, 2009.

Tour de Tucson - Late November

Of course, the usual suspects should be lined up, STP, RSVP, etc. No Chilly Hilly for 2009, as there's already a conflict. Have to do that one as part of a regular ride....

OK, let's just go ahead and set the goals......

Sunday, November 16, 2008

From the Sublime to the Ridiculous

The view from Magnolia Bluff on this warm November morning was spectacular, with the ferry entering the fog and Rainier in the background. It felt good to get back on the bike, although I'm sluggish after a layoff. Then, drifted down to Pioneer Square for an espresso at Zeitgeist, where the Seahawks Faithful were getting warmed up to face another loss.

Here's the continuum from the sublime to the ridiculous captured in one shot through the glass. The cafe denizens bent over their laptops did their best to ignore the guy with his face painted and his embarrassing costume. Why do adults dress up like this when they go to a football game?

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Winter is Coming


It's beginning to look less like fall and more like winter.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Why I Need to Get Back on the Bike


Our trips to LA usually end up being a series of long car rides interrupted by family events and eating. This one was no exception. We did visit the Griffith Park Observatory on a spectacularly clear day, saw the pendulum, the memorial to James Dean, the models of the planets, the exhibits that explain eclipes, the seasons, etc. All that astrophysics helps build a healthy appetite, and the GPS led us to an Silver Lake Institution, Burrito King.


There are two locations, one at Alvarado and Sunset, close to Dodger Stadium. That one is across the street from the car wash that was the subject of the epic film, Car Wash, and offers a sense of danger plus no parking. The Silver Lake edition includes covered seating, plus a shared parking lot with the Liberty Bell Rastafarian Temple, complete with imposing armed guard. Machaca, chile rellenos, chicken fajita burrito (not a great choice) and a chile relleno burrito (an excellent choice) and we were in heaven.



The next day, we ventured into historic old Los Angeles, which meant, of course, a stop at Phillipe's, home of the French Dip sandwich. In our large party (larger at the end of the meal), there were several of the roast beef, some with cheese, some without, but the winner sandwich was the lamb with blue cheese. With the cole slaw, macaroni salad, potato salad and pickles, an extended stroll through Olvera Street was in order There one could procure a fine lucha libre mask, a bullwhip, or a churro from Mr. Churro, if you needed dessert. Across the street is LA's Union Station, no longer looking creepy and abandoned because of the automobile, but now looking great, well used, with lots of passengers now commuting by rail.

For us, no trip to LA is complete without deli, and this time Junior's in Westwood was the target. Sandwiches there are named for awards, not for the stars, and the Grammy is the corned beef (or pastrami) on rye with cole slaw and Russian dressing. Junior's rye bread does an excellent job of standing up to the thinly sliced meat and the accompaniments. When paired with latkes, kreplach and matzoh ball soup (the size of a softball), we might be hungry again after several weeks.

Since last week's visit to the Bay Area included a visit to the historic Oasis, and with the onset of fall, grading finals, the holidays and other distractions, more frequent trips to the gym, more miles on the bike, and a steady diet of water, clear broth, fruits and vegetables may be in order to be prepared for whatever challenges may be present in the future.

More photos here....

Friday, October 24, 2008

Fall Rides, Fall Down, Computer on the Fritz


Crisp fall ride out to the Locks, across the bridge, and out to Golden Gardens. It was a sunny afternoon ride after a couple of days of classes plus a Monday workout at the Learning Factory gym. I've been on the go since the previous week with the trip to Ohio, Sunday in Tacoma, no bike time, run down, eating poorly, and grrrrrrr........

So after dinner, a quick and intense headache led to me to lie down, and lights out for 10+ hours, and I'm a new man.

At the end of the Tuesday ride, the bike computer was on the fritz still, despite new batteries. Coupled with a pressing need to exchange fluids, a stop at Counterbalance on the BGT was warranted. They shimmied up the sensor, while talking bikes and business, and sent me on my way.


Three days later, back on the bike to the Learning Factory, fine commute with RPD, but the #*!$%&! thing still doesn't work. Time to activate the warranty!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

What We Saw in Tacoma


Tacoma's Cheney Stadium became Obama-Biden Stadium today. As Joe told us, if it were Cheney Stadium, we wouldn't be able to find it because it would be in an undisclosed location. Max and I got to shake hands with the future VP!

A large crowd of over 11,000
, and as diverse a crowd as you could find in the Pacific NW, listened to Biden, Gregoire, Murray and other Democrat politicos.



Cincinnati Cuisine

So this is where we ate while in Cincinnati. Ribs. Chicken. Sides included an large salad with excellent 'Blue Cheese' dressing. Volcano sundaes offered for dessert, but no takers.

The Montgomery Inn is decorated with sports memoribilia, with an emphasis on signed baseballs, and given the location, special homage to the Big Red Machine.

While some claim these to be The Greatest Ribs in the U.S., other noted authorities have differing opinions about where it is best to dine. At this point, I don't have enough information to reach a definitive conclusion, so research must continue.

Of course, no meal is complete without dessert, so we were directed to Graeter's for ice cream. Again, additional investigation is warranted, for scientific purposes.

Finally, our hosts insisted that our culinary expedition continue at lunch, and served us Skyline Chili Dogs. Interesting. The chili tastes somewhat sweet, seasoned with cinnamon, chocolate and cumin. The sausage represented something of a disappoinment, especially when compared with what is generally considered to be the apex of this gourmet specialty. Experts agree. While Pink's uses Hoffy's dogs, they are not still not in the same league as those that must meet more stringent standards. And, some might argue that those are not in the same class as the famous Dodger Dog, which are the eastern-most in quality, and the western-most in flavor.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Comeback

Got to the 'Businessman's Hotel' on the outskirts of Cincinnati last night. This place is out in the burbs, surrounded by strip malls, chain restaurants (shuttle driver, 'There's a Cracker Barrel, a Waffle House.....') and big box stores. Generica.

After a fast food burrito, I settled in for email and online teaching, plus to watch the ALCS. The Rays (what kind of a baseball team is that?) had a 5-0 lead, and then stretched it to 7-0. Called home, talked to C and M, who commiserated with me about the game. Conversation drifted to what he had to accomplish for school the next day.

Then Pedroia's single. Then Big Papi's homer. Then Drew's blast. I called back and ordered Max from the basement to do something important, like watch the Comeback. As Ron writes, Posnanski's account is terrific.

Other fantastic finishes
include from Dodgers '59, 'Big bouncer, over the mound, over second base. Up with it, Mantilla. Throws low and wild! Hodges scores! We go to Chicago!'

In October 1988, C and I arranged a date at a fine local Italian restaurant in honor of our anniversary. While waiting at the tavern across the street, the A's were mowing down the hopelessly overmatched Dodgers in Game One of the World Series. A fine meal, including antipasti, insalate miste, pasta, pane, no doubt dessert, and vino. (I could do that then, with the best of 'em.) Got back in the car, and "I don't believe what I just saw!"

I still have the VHS tape of the game and Gibson's homerun.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Monday, October 13, 2008

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Fall Rides of the Week


As fall sets in, there were a couple of rides this week, the normal commute on a sunny but chilly Friday, and a loop on the weekend. The Learning Factory trip was routine, up for the annual schedule discussion (Last year's schedule worked. Let's do it again.) and all-important department meeting held at an appropriate venue. Return trip via Honey Bear Bakery at LFP was marked by neglecting to retrieve my sunglasses after dropping them to the ground, BGT to VR, and then return two hours later to find them. Consider that I'm not $80 poorer as a result, and call it a victory.

Artistic highlight of the weekend was going to the Cinerama to see the digitally-restored version of The Godfather, Coppola's masterpiece and one of the greatest movies ever made. Even though I've watched it many, many times, the hospital scene and dinner at Louie's in the Bronx still produces chills.



Sunday's ride with CAL and her friend Chris took us over the Magnolia Bluff, through Myrtle Edwards and downtown, over I-90 and then up Leschi. Good folks to ride with, although I drop like a rock on the hill climbs.

Bike computer
rides 1325 miles YTD, but that measure can't really be trusted, as the wireless sensors seem to drop out frequently, and sometimes mph = zero when I know that I'm going forward. Let's see if a battery change improves performance.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Kitsap Color Classic

The KCC starts at the Edmonds Ferry Dock with the voyage across the Sound to Kingston (WA, not Jamaica). This year, I rode from the Little House on VR down to the start, most of which is my normal commute route with a side trip down 104 and along Roslynn Sumners Way into downtown (such as it is) Edmonds.


We took the route to Poulsbo which passes through Port Gamble, past the Hood Canal Bridge, and through rural Kitsap.

The first and only food stop (bagels, pb & j, assorted fruit, munchies and fresh water) was located about 20 miles out at Liberty Bay Park on King Harald V St. in Poulsbo. After the first true October storm on Saturday, the sun and dry pavement were welcome.


Lots of animals on this trip, including dogs resting in the street, horses, cows, goats, llamas, as well as these guys on the road back into Kingston.

The bike computer didn't function on the first leg of the trip, but a quick adjustment at the Edmonds Ferry Dock got it working, and I logged 36 miles from start to finish. Considering that the route to the Learning Factory is about 13.5, 14 miles from VR to the Dock is reasonable, so we'll call it 50 miles today, and crossing 1240 miles YTD on the Bleriot. The weather made the new fenders not important, but no rubbing on the tires, no chattering and no notice of the additional weight meant that they weren't noticed, either. I'll be riding in the rain soon enough.

More photos here.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Bike Commuter Bailout?

How did this get there?

And, what else was included?

Commentary by the good folks at This American Life....

Now and Then

Phil Lesh continues to make interesting music. The latest free download compares now with then and then.

Back to our regularly scheduled programming....

Friday, October 3, 2008

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Touch Public Art in Seattle


Sunday was a perfect day to join CAL and GVB on the long-awaited 'Touch Public Art in Seattle" ride I had purchased at the Learning Factory Foundation auction. Warm, brilliant sunshine. We started at Gas Works Park, pedaled over to check out the new J.P. Patches statue and Waiting for the Interurban, Taco Del Mar Lenin, and the Fremont Rocket.


Out to the Locks, and down Interbay led us to the Olympic Sculpture Park, Pioneer Square and a caffeine infusion at Zeitgeist. Then through Eastlake, where GVB remarked that this could have been a tour of historic bars of Seattle, and out to U of W.
Of course, we were hungry at this point, so CAL led us to a great venue for a Burrito Bravo in the Golden Oldies parking lot. Satisfying! More pictures of the ride here.

Topped the 1200 mile YTD mark with this ride.

Hope that the weather holds for Kitsap CC, but the outlook is wet and windy.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Country Bike Web Page

Another interesting geezer who rides a Bleriot writes about his bike. Pictures, podcasts and other links. And, it puts the RAGBRAI thought back into the active part of the cerebral cortex.

While I did the RSVP this year, I didn't do any of the other big rides that were originally considered, STP, NYC Century, or Lake Tahoe.

Next year? Good reasons to keep riding through winter, which seems to have set in.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

When Worlds Collide - Latest Episode


When the odometer flips over 1K, the New Ride is no longer 'new.' Added 60 + miles on another spectacular fall day, first up to the Learning Factory for a picture with the Vets Club, as I had contributed to their mileage project for 9/11, and then out to Marymoor to cheer on the Breast Cancer walkers.

Two dear friends from high school, about 50 gazillion years ago, are participating in the walk. Picked Lisa and Mallory up from King Street Station and shared dinner with them, plus C & M, the night before. They all hit it off in splendid fashion and, for me, the experience was one of finally being able to connect my present with past friends, to come full circle, connect some dots, restore the universe, have worlds collide and walk away smiling. Both of the old friends look healthy, happy, wonderful senses of humor and presence, victorious survivors.

So, on the walk, I waited for them to hit the SRT after about 19 miles, and while waiting, cheered on hundreds of other walkers, some carrying flags honoring wives, daughters, sisters, friends who had been afflicted with cancer. I thought of Lynn, of Mary-Pat, the Fat Cyclist's wife, Susan , even Auntie Dot, and the other women who are fighting through that. Deeply moving. And, the other things were present as well, including watching how people react after walking 19 miles, knowing that they have two more days to go, tired feet, legs, backs, how they react as they see the sign telling them they are almost at the end, smiles, laughter and lots of comments about getting a ride on the Bleriot, which is no longer the new ride. L and M were in fine shape as they made the turn, smiles, hugs, and laughter, but they looked ready for Day One to be done!

My ride back was gently pleasant in the warm autumn afternoon sunshine, against a headwind that turned into a tailwind near the top of the lake. A few weeks ago, I wondered where summer had gone. It's still here.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Iron Horse


Rode the Iron Horse Trail from Cedar Falls to Hyak on a beautiful early September Sunday. 50 + miles on a gravel road, a former railroad right-of-way with a relatively easy climb along the north side of a ridge.

The trail crosses a series of ravines and creeks over old railroad trestles. It being a Sunday, the trail was well populated with mountain bikers of various experience levels, many traveling without helmets in early preparation for organ donations or at least testing their chances for a Darwin award.


The clear highlight of the trip is the 2.5 mile trip in total darkness through the Snoqualmie Tunnel. Dark. I mean, real dark. And damp. And cold. Water dripping at both ends. Can't tell if you are going straight. An occasional rider coming from the opposite direction provides some light, but difficult to tell if they can see or know what they are doing...

Once on the other side, at Hyak, the air is drier, the sky more blue, and an overriding sense of relief at having made it to the top.

Interesting to poke around Snoqualmie Summit during the off season. We haven't boarded there for a couple of years, although it's where we all learned. Looks like new activity at the Silver Fir chair. Rode over to the base of the trail to the Mountaineers Lodge, where Cub Pack 144 held Sno-Camp for the years we were members. The Lodge burnt to the ground a couple of years ago, and hasn't been rebuilt. The trail to the lodge site was blocked off and No Trespassing signs warned against the hike up. I was in cleats and pushing the bike, so didn't venture up.

The return trip was much quicker, totally downhill!

Others have blogged about the trail, including Biking Bis and Keith.

My photos are here.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Magnolia Loop


From last time.....no, I never hit 65.9 MPH......the bike computer went a little nuts while I was waiting for a light.



Warm, sunny September day at Golden Gardens, where I went to extend the Magnolia Loop. Finally, I'm beginning to feel like there's some distance between the now and summer quarter.


And, a stop at Gas Works provided an opportunity to watch a couple of landings on Lake Union.

Witnessed a young woman take a header at the end of the BGT in Ballard, just west of the Fred Meyer. She tried to cross the railroad tracks, got caught and fell. Took the opportunity to distribute one of the many Group Health Ouch Pouches collected from various rides. And, reminded her and her BF that helmets were good ideas.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Trip to West Seattle


C had some business in West Seattle, so I headed over there to share some coffee and check it out. Here are the tugs at the north end of Elliott Bay.



The view of Seattle from Alki is amazing, as the Space Needle peaks out from behind the bluff


From Salty's, the million-dollar view.


Lots of fishermen casting and jigging for salmon at the mouth of the Duwamish River, as it empties into Elliott Bay. Lots of fishermen, but no salmon visible.


At the Goldmark Lookout in Madrona, a house across the street with an old sign advertising burgers and soda. The plaque commemorating the Goldmarks is a reminder of real madness and grief that is present.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

PM Ride - Headwinds in Both Directions


Afternoon ride with into a blustery autumn south wind, in the direction I was going a head wind. With vacation, numerous walks down the hill to the Dog Park, the legs and knees are barking with some wear and tear, but the clouds and the New Ride beckoned...



Reached downtown, played in traffic on Stewart for a bit, dodging the rush hour buses, avoiding the obvious risks that those with more of a death wish chose to take, and made it to Myrtle Edwards to notice that the weather front was passing, and the wind was changing.



Late August brings the fishermen to the pier. Catch of the day included Elliott Bay Rockfish and salmon.


Locally, the wind had shifted, now out of the north, so I had grunted against another headwind through the Interbay Gap and out to Ballard. At the Locks, had a brief conversation with the skipper of the Coastal Sea. They were headed to Alaska, eventually to Dutch Harbor, maybe the Pribilofs. The skipper said that summer in Alaska was wonderful, but I wondered how much of that would be left. Wished him and his crew a safe journey, and pedaled home.

780 + miles on the new ride!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

October in August?

While sitting on the bench at the Locks, out of the rain after doing the Magnolia Loop, listening to the thunder, watching the occasional flash of lightning, I wondered at what point did August turn into October? Time to put on the fenders, after drying out the shoes....

Maybe Liz has it right....

After finishing Blood Meridian, it's time for a different novel as the schlep of summer quarter begins to recede into the wet of Autumn...

Friday, August 22, 2008

Bad Behavior

Encountered several examples of bad behavior today. As it was the last day of the quarter and all assignments and exams were due, the whining started. There were two, count ‘em, two different incidents of students asking me to increase their grades simply so they could have higher marks. They didn’t question whether exam answers could have been interpreted differently, or if a homework grade was too harsh. No, they believed that I would raise their grades simply because they had asked, and that they deserved it. Out and out gall to ask me, in essence, to commit fraud on their behalf.

Another student was able to ignore announcements for two weeks, an assignment due date and an exam for a week, and then claimed that I was ruining his life and I was ‘mean’ for insisting that he be subject to the same deadlines and schedules as the rest of the class.

Unbelievable.

Glad that I'm on vacation.

And, then on the way home on the BGT, I stopped to see the seven trees that were victims of deliberate poisoning. Unbelievably brazen behavior. These trees blocked the view from a deck directly to the west, and its obvious that the homeowner is the perpetrator.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

RSVP Recap

So, I made it. We made it. It was HOT, especially Day #2 as the sun and the heat bounced off the pavement.

But, the RSVP is a special ride, and worth a definite repeat. My pix are here, Lynne's pix are here (including one of yours truly and the New Ride), Shaun's comments are here...

Day #1 started at about 6:15, down the hill after breakfast and last minute futzing about to Magnuson Park. Put the bag in the truck and then north on the BGT. Zoka hosted a coffee and Clif Bar stop just after Log Boom Park, a spot hitter for me and where I caught up with CLevi and Shaun, riding partners who pulled me along for a couple of days.

Rest stop in Snohomish after climbing a Woodinville hill, and then onto the Centennial Trail up to Lake Stevens. We had a comfortable pace, and while the weather was warm, all seemed fine. Then, a few hills showed up, partners went on ahead, passed through Arlington, stopping for a snack and a fluid exchange, and then north to Mount Vernon. Noon, sun directly overhead, and hills on the Lake Cavanaugh road, and the melting, the need to hydrate, and the headache began. By the time I got to Mount Vernon, I needed Tylenol, water, more snacks, double-tall iced latte, thank you, and a rest. Still, about 2 hours and Chuckanut Drive to go....

Then, a wrong turn, lots of confusing Dan Henry's out there, and I spent a good 45 minutes and at least ten miles riding through Skagit River Delta farm land, raspberries, blackberries, cows, etc, trying to get back to the route. Made it to Edison, and then back to Bow Hill Road and a mini-stop, where the WWU Cycling Club rep laughed at me and told me that I had not been alone. Somewhat relieved, time to start up Chuckanut, great views, big hills, but shade and shadows to cool the schlep a bit, pink lemonade at the top of the last climb, and finally to B'ham, the dorms, no pool (wait until next year), a shower, dinner at the Boundary Bay Brewery, and then bed.

Day 2 was easier. All-you-can eat breakfast (and I did) at Viking Commons and then on the road to Lynden, quick stop at Dutch Mother's, and north to the border. We paralleled Canada for about a mile, all separating the two countries was a ditch the width of a fat guy's standing broad jump, but still crossed at the Aldergrove border crossing. Many foto ops, and then north to face The Wall, (not so bad, just steep hill), and then to the Albion ferry to go across the Fraser River. The wait was in the sun, but we ran into Rachel and Marty while queuing up. The sun was directly overhead, and the heat was intensifying.

After the ferry, I slowed to adjust a shoe cleat that had loosened and lost the posse for good. Just as well, as they were burning up the road. With the heat, slow and steady, with plenty of rest stops worked for me.

Finally into the Van BC eastern suburbs, Barnet Highway and then bike paths (actually sharrows) into the city proper. A view of BC Place, dropped into Chinatown, through Gastown on Water Street, and then up to the Coast Plaza on Denham. The family meeting me at the finish line was a wonderful surprise!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Nebraska

Lincoln, Nebraska is a nice college town on a flat grid, with much of what makes a college town.


Bike friendly, brew pubs and coffee houses, plus the obligatory chains, the Starbucks, the Applebee’s, the Holiday Inn, movie house playing the latest Hollywood studio offerings. But, a polite Midwestern feel to all, with friendly retail help, freshly scrubbed young white Christian faces and smiles, some authentic.




Liz (H’s best friend in all the world, from way back when at the Nerskip School) and I had a fun visit. We walked to Haymarket Square, had dinner at Buzzard Billy's (I had a buffalo steak), and then walked to the ballpark to see the Lincoln Salt Dogs.


It was ‘Girls’ Night Out at Haymarket Park, with tables set up for the local salon, Curves, Mary Kay Cosmetics, raffles with cheap prizes galore and between inning silly fun. During warm-ups, we chatted with one of the St. Paul Saints, who offered a genuine American Association baseball! A treasure. We stayed long-enough to hear the 7th inning off-key rendition of “Take Me Out to the Ballgame,” as we walked on the bridge over the railroad tracks, passing a large toad resting by the side. Throughout the evening the weather was muggy and we watched clouds build from the south. There were a few drops here and there, but no rain out. At about 2:00 a.m., I was awakened by the downpour outside the hotel window.

So, each time these workshops are different. At U of N, there was an old pro, an adjunct that loved teaching, had been used to the honors students and now had accepted the challenge of two large sections with 200+ students. Friendly, welcoming and new her way around the classroom and students. Students probably loved her. The other participants were PhD candidates, again, friendly and welcoming, but seemed a bit more interested in finishing up their programs and getting jobs than in improving teaching. Their focus with the technology and the content was more along the lines of automating homework, developing computer-graded quizzes, and less on how to better the experience for students. Not surprising however, as much of what this workshop is about is making it easier for instructors. Still, the ideas of the Change or Die Commission came to mind, especially, when the number of new accounting PhDs is much less than the available teaching slots nationwide.

The trip back to Seattle was relatively uneventful, thankfully not ending up in the long line for cancelled and delayed flights (and angry, frustrated passengers) at the United Airlines desk at the Denver Airport. However, I did leave the iPod on the flight from Lincoln to Denver. I contacted Lost and Found, but will see if I ever see that one again.