Friday, March 31, 2006

Picture of the Day

This picture was taken February 13th, 2000 at Miller Park, Milwaukee, Wisconsin. This was backwhen Nate, Andy and I would launch rockets. As you can see they weren't done with Miller Park yet. I had a kickball meeting last night, so I was a bit hung over at work today. It was a bad day and I don't feel like typing any more.

Thursday, March 30, 2006

Picture of the Day

8-10-99, The White House, Washington, D.C.

I Expect No Responce

If you are a regular reader you will probably find this funny. If not, well than you will find this pretty dumb. And based on past polls I have put out, I doubt anyone will answer.

Where would you rather live?
Fort Wayne, Indiana
Columbia, Missouri
Free polls from

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Picture of the Day

This picture was taken on August 30th 2003 in Morgantown, West Virginia. I went out to West Virginia for the badger football game. My old roommate, Joe, had a group of his college buddies that were going out there and I got the opportunity to tag along with them. They were one crazy group. Anyhow this is in the parking lot before the game. There were quite a few other Badger fans and one group had something that was called "The Beer Ski". 5 cups taped to a ski, you fill them all up and 5 people drink all at once. Of course I had to do it and then get a picture with it.

I Never Thought I Would Say This

As shocking as this may sound. I now feel a little bit sorry for politicians. Or at least I can sympathize with them. Recently I posted a poll on my blog about the issue of my welcher friend, Dave Stegall. I do have a site meter on my site, so I have an idea of how many people check out my blog. Since I have posted the poll well over 100 people have visited my site. And I have had all of 18 people vote on this issue, and I am pretty sure the 4 votes that sided with Dave were all from him. So what is the deal with you people:

Why Don't You Vote?
Came to this site by accident.
Stupid. (Nura?)
Afraid of being recognized, even though you won't.
Choosing not to decide is to decide.
Just don't want to.
Free polls from

Office Space

I am going through a bit of an "Office Space" moment here at URS. Today is Bahama Mama Mania day.

Here is actual email I got Monday: "Don't forget to sign up for the Bahama Mama Potluck - THIS WEDNESDAY!!!!!!. Sign up sheet is in the break room. Also, don't forget about the Hawaiian shirt contest."

And here is Bill Lumbergh: "Oh and remember, next Friday is Hawaiian shirt day! So, y'know, if you want to, go ahead and uh, wear a Hawaiian shirt and jeans."

I have already been asked twice today "Where is your Hawaiian shirt?"

In case you are wondering I did get the memo on the new cover sheets on the TPS reports.

As for this up coming weekend "I'm thinking I'm gonna take that new chick from Logistics. I might be showing her my O face. Oh! Oh! Oh! you know what I'm talking about. Oh! Yeah. Right. See you guys there."

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Picture of the Day

This picture was taken June 11, 2000 in Cleveland, Ohio along the banks of Lake Erie. that is me on a Cargo Ship in Cleveland. I was bored that day and went on this ship tour deal thing. It was right next to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. That was my favorite hat. And one of my favorite shirts.

DOT Story

July 29, 2005

I was driving down the project today and I stopped by the foreman for the concrete crew. They were setting up the forms for the concrete medians. I asked him if there were any problems. He said no not really, but he was wondering about this sign location. We walked to the end of the concrete median where the concrete ends and the grass part of the median begins. About a foot inside the mark for the end of the concrete was a mark for a sign. I couldn’t believe it. He asked why we don’t just move it a foot or two so it would be outside of the concrete. I said I know and wiped out the mark with my foot. Then I went back to the field office. I looked that signing plan that Nura had been using to lay out the signs. About two weeks earlier I told her that I was going to be putting her in charge of all the permanent signing. At that time I told her that we needed to locate the signs that would be going in the concrete medians. I looked at the plan and there was one sign for Junction with CTH Z. This is the same sign that the foreman and I had just been talking about. I told her at that time that we could move that sign two feet so that it wouldn’t fall in the concrete. This makes things easier for everyone since they don’t have to form around a hole for the sign. Plus leaving a formed out hole at the end of a concrete slab would increase the chance of the concrete cracking. Of course at that time I knew that Nura wouldn’t remember the conversation so I went on to her plan and made a note. So despite me verbally telling her and writing it down on her plan, she still marked it to be put in the concrete. When I asked her about it, she said, “Well I made a mistake.”

Blog is down

I am again having problems with the blog server and uploading pictures. I tried last night but I couldn't get any pictures to load. I will try again tonight. Sorry to disappoint you. I don't have too much new in my life. However it does seem like there are forces aligned against me in regards to this exam coming up in less than a month. Last night I was at the Wauwatosa Library studying, and the fire alarm went off. What are the chances? The librarians kicked everyone out. So I went over by Nate and played some ping pong. I guess that might help if there is a dynamics portion on the exam. But I doubt it.

I would like to also update my Deadbeat list. And I do appreciate all of those who have paid me. Here are the current Deadbeats who owe me money.

Diane, Heather, Kaker, Ray, The General, Truz and Villa.

Sunday, March 26, 2006

NCAA Update

The Final 4 isn't over, but my pool is. Since no one of the 21 people to enter has any of the remaining teams in the finals or as the champion, no one can gain any more points. But first before I get to the final standings, let me call out the deadbeats.

Borky, Diane, Heather, Kaker, Nevey, Ray, The General, Truz, Villa.

Now the final standings.

1st: 62 points, Tree ($150)
2nd: 60 points, Bubs ($50)
3rd: 59 points, Sherman ($10)
4th: 57 points, The General, Villa
5th: 56 points, Doggie
6th: 55 points, Borky, Krum #1
7th: 54 points, Nevey
8th: 53 points, Krum #2, Krum 3
9th: 52 points, Heather, Me
10th: 49 points, Kaker
11th: 47 points, Nate, Truz
12th: 45 points, Coonen, Jota, Ray
13th: 43 points, Dan
14th: 40 points, Diane

As always, please double check your sheets, I may have made a mistake. But that is highly unlikely.

Picture of the Day

I am sorry. I have been a little behind on the Picture of the Day. This picture was taken last weekend at Oakland Gyros. As we were leaving I noticed this guy passed out at the booth next to us. As you can see, his friend who apparently fell into a puddle could really care less about his friend. Or maybe he does because I would have been putting ketchup on his hat or something.

Saturday, March 25, 2006

NCAA Update

I am sure all of my gamblers have been checking my blog early this morning to see where they stand. And while you are here, why not vote for Stegall being a welcher. I will get to that later. Alright let me get to the Tournament. First my deadbeats. And number of you have called or emailed me for my address, it is posted on one of the previous comments. But you are still a deadbeat until the money is in hand.

Deadbeats: Borky, Diane, Heather, Kaker, Nevey, Ray, Sherman, The General, Truz, Villa

Current Standings:
1st: 58 points, Tree
2nd: 57 points, Villa
3rd: 56 points, Bubs
4th: 55 points, Borky, Krum #1, Sherman
5th: 54 points, Nevey
6th: 53 points, Krum #2, Krum #3
7th: 52 points, Doggie, Heather, Rickie
8th: 49 points, Kaker
9th: 47 points, Nate, The General, Truz
10th: 45 points, Coonen, Jota, Ray
11th: 43 points, Dan
12th: 40 points, Diane

Possible Points
1st: 87 points, Sherman (All Final 4 Teams still alive)
2nd: 81 points, Krum #2
3rd: 80 points, Doggie
4th: 79 points, Bubs
5th: 77 points, Kaker
6th: 76 points, Rickie
7th: 74 points, Krum #1, Villa
8th: 73 points, Nevey
9th: 70 points, Borky, The General
10th: 66 points, Krum #3
11th: 62 points, Tree, Truz
12th: 60 points, Coonen, Jota
13th: 58 points, Dan
14th: 52 points, Heather
15th: 49 points, Ray
16th: 48 points, Diane
17th: 47 points, Nate

And now for the Eliminations
Name, (highest place you can finish)
Borky (1st)
Bubs (1st)
Coonen (6th)
Dan (7th)
Diane (13th)
Doggie (2nd)
Heather (7th)
Jota (6th)
Kaker (1st)
Krum #1 (1st)
Krum #2 (1st)
Krum #3 (3rd)
Nate (9th)
Nevey (1st)
Ray (10th)
Sherman (1st)
General (2nd)
Rickie (2nd)
Tree (1st)
Truz (4th)
Villa (1st)

Friday, March 24, 2006

Question for the Public

This is a new function on my blog, so there might be a problem or two. Let me first give you a little background on a certain situation. My good friend, Dave Stegall, who know many of you may know as The General, and I are in a bit of a discrepancy and I thought I would use my valued readers to settle the dispute. The General has fallen into a bit of finacial debt with me over a number of issues. Dave Matthews Tickets, Fantasy Football, and other wagers. The General was under the impression that he owed me $95 and was willing to pay me $100, calling the additional $5 "juice" or interest as non gamblers call it. I have since enlightened The General to the fact that he owes me approximately $121. Now The General has told me that he won't pay me any interest. Now I ask you should he pay me interest?

Should Stegall Pay Interest?
Yes and Stegall is a welcher
Free polls from

Quick NCAA Update

These are the current standings after last nights games. I will have an update tomorrow morning on eliminations, possible points and deadbeats. What do you think about that Fort Wayne?
1st: 52 points – Borky, Krum #1, Tree
2nd: 50 points – Bubs, Krum #2, Krum #3
3rd: 49 points – Doggie, Sherman
4th: 48 points – Nevey, Villa
5th: 47 points – The General
6th: 46 points – Heather, Rickie
7th: 43 points – Kaker
8th: 42 points – Coonen, Ray
9th: 41 points – Nate, Truz
10th: 40 points – Dan
11th: 39 points – Jota
12th: 37 points – Diane

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Picture of the Day

This picture was taken October 1st, 2000 in Waukesha, Wisconsin at my brother, Jeff's house. My nephew, Zack wanted a clown at his 3rd birthday party. So I was first on the list to jump in the costume. But when I was putting on the make up, the only way I could think of putting it on was like Gene Simmons. Turns out for three year olds, the Gene Simmons make up is a little frightening even if it is a bit on the technocolor side. And I will be honest my ability to make balloon animal is nearly non existant. Maybe I need to study up on balloon animals. It has been a while since i have practiced my juggling too. I need to get a job that isn't quite so demanding. I quote Lloyd and Harry from Dumb and Dumber. "There are no job available in this town." "Unless you want to work 40 hours a week."

One of My All-Favorite Stories

Back in 1997 or 1998 my good friend, Dave Stegall, was in Army Basic Training. In the early goings of his basic training Dave had called me, gave me his address and pretty much begged me to write him a letter or two. Apparently mail call, and getting mail is a big deal in the army. Over the course of the summer I wrote Dave a couple letters. I believe Dave was the rank of “Private”. The first letter I wrote to Dave was addressed as follows:

Sergeant Dave Stegall
c/o Homosexuals in the Army
124 Army Lane
Tacoma, Washington 87590

Apparently Dave received this letter without incident. But it raised his anxiety level, fearing what would happen if future letters came addressed in the same manner. A couple of weeks later I sent Dave another letter. This time I addressed it:

General Dave Stegall
c/o Guys Who Claim to Be Able to Beat Up Their Drill Sergeant
124 Army Lane
Tacoma, Washington 87590

Most of the rest of the accounts of this story I have heard second hand from Dave, but I consider it to be rather factual. And if I have made any errors, I am sure that Dave, who is a semi faithful blog reader will make the proper clarifications. Dave and his platoon had just returned to the barracks and the Drill Sergeant was going through mail call. As he was leafing through the letters and calling out names, he got to my letter for Dave. Upon reading the envelope the Drill Sergeant paused then placed the letter under his left arm. Immediately Dave knew that this was another letter from me. The Drill Sergeant continued through with the rest of the mail and when he finished he announced to the platoon, “Gentleman, you are about to witness something that I have never seen in my 30 years in the military. And it is probably something that none of you will ever see again in your military careers. You are about to see a General in the United States Army drop and do push ups. STEGALL, GET UP HERE!!!” Dave knowing he was in for a hurting, slowly walked up to the Drill Sergeant. When he got up to Drill Sergeant the Sergeant yelled, “STEGALL START PUSHING THEM OUT!!!” And as he did so the Drill Sergeant threw the letter down on the ground. When the letter landed on the floor it landed face down. This was unfortunate for Dave because on the back of the letter I had written “Hey Dave, Don’t worry about the troubles you are having, keep dropping the soap in the shower and sooner of later you will meet that someone special.” This writing had caught the eye of the Drill Sergeant and he stopped and picked the letter back up and read the back. The ensuing dialog was as follows:
Drill Sergeant: “Holy Shit!!! Holy Shit!!! Stegall stand up!”
Dave stands after having only done 7 or 8 push ups.
Drill Sergeant: “Stegall, Are you a homosexual?”
Dave: “Sir, no sir.”
Drill Sergeant: “How did you get in this man’s army? I thought homosexuals weren’t allowed in the Army?”
Dave: “Sir, I am not a homosexual sir.”
Drill Sergeant: “Are you getting wise with me Private?”
Dave: “Sir, no sir.”
At which point the Drill Sergeant puts his hand in front of his crotch region with two fingers pointing out.
Drill Sergeant: “Stegall, How many fingers do you see?”
Dave with his eyes still looking straight forward: “The private refuses to answer that question because he feels that any answer that he gives will be the wrong answer.”
Drill Sergeant: “Get back down there and start kissing the floor.”
While Dave went back to doing his push ups, the Drill Sergeant addressed the remainder of the platoon and went into great detail that he had his suspicions of Dave being in fact gay. Because of these suspicions no one in the platoon was allowed to be in the showers at the same time as Dave. The Drill Sergeant then dismissed the entire platoon to the mess hall except for Dave who was left behind doing push ups. The rest of the platoon actually had to walk around Dave as they exited the barracks, most of them feeling sorry for Dave. This incident also gave rise to Dave’s new nickname “General” which was how the Drill Sergeant addressed Dave for the remainder of Dave’s time on the base. As the days and weeks past, from time to time the Drill Sergeant would see Dave from a distance around the base and would call out “GENERAL!!!” and then he would make a bending motion with his arms. This of course meant that Dave was to do push ups until the Drill Sergeant got there. On another occasion, Dave was in the barracks and headed for the showers, and the Drill Sergeant happened to be around and noticed Dave headed for the showers.
Drill Sergeant: “Stegall, where do you think you are going?”
Dave: “Sir, I was going to take a shower sir.”
Drill Sergeant: “With other men in there? Not on my watch.” He would then walk over to the showers and yell. “Alright everyone out, General wants to take a shower!”
Dave later recalled to me that because of that letter he was forced to do well over 1000 push ups. And when his arms got too sore to do any more push ups, he had to do flutter kicks, so he did equally as many of them. And if I don't mention it, I know Dave will. Apparently all of the push ups that Dave had to do, caused his tendonitis to flair up in his shoulder. Some mornings he had to have his bunkmate help him put his shirt on. Big deal. There were a couple other letters that I sent to Dave that caused a bit of hardship for Dave, namely the one addressed to “Commander in Chief Dave Stegall” but the one addressed “General” got the most play. And I know that one of the letters I sent to him didn’t even have a letter in it, it was just an envelope. I guess be careful what you wish for.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Picture of the Day

This picture was taken on Halloween 1999 over at Preston's Place across the street from my place in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. This was the night that a group of us went out to Sussex or Merton to see the Love Monkeys play at some beer tent and Security tried to throw me out. It was also the night I used one of the worst lines I have ever used on a girl that actually worked. Towards the end of the evening we ended up back a party and somehow I managed to manuever a female into one of the bedrooms. We were laying on the bed and while I was still all dressed up in my costume, this is what I recall of the dialog.
Me: "Have you ever kissed a black man before?"
Her: "No."
Me: "Do you want to?"
Her: "Yes."
Then I planted one on her.
That is Gold, pure Gold.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Picture of the Day

In honor of seeing Mark and Suzanne this weekend, I thought I would throw a picture with them up. This was taken May 24, 2003 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. This was at T1's wedding. T1 being the nick name we gave Todd. So from the left to the right Me, Suzanne, Mark, Kevin and Todd. And imagine that, we are drinking. I am pretty sure that it wasn't my idea to do shots. Mark, Kevin, Todd and I were all roommates at one time. Bob who was our other roommate didn't make it to the wedding. And actually for one summer Suzanne was our roommate too. But she paid her rent in the form of doing the dishes. Sorry Shauntelle, but I don't have any pictures of you, so you aren't going to make it on to the blog.

Monday, March 20, 2006

Picture of the Day

I might be opening up a big can of worms here. I got this picture sent to me today by my good friend, Krum. Now as you all know this is "The Life of Rickie" and it is all about my own self promotion. But this is a pretty good picture. So I guess if anyone has a good picture, I would consider posting it. This picture is of Krum and Goob in Utah. I know I have a lot of not so flattering pictures of myself that I have posted, but these two look like Ace and Gary the Ambiguously Gay Duo from Saturday Night Live. Please let me know if you agree with me.

NCAA as Requested

Borky - Final 4 Duke, Memphis, Ohio State, Illinois. Champ Memphis over Ohio State.

Bubs - Final 4 Duke, UCLA, Villanova, UCONN. Champ UCONN over Duke.

Coonen - Final 4 Duke, Pittsburgh, Boston College, UCONN. Champ UCONN over Duke.

Dan - Final 4 Duke, Gonzaga, Boston College, UCONN. Champ UCONN over Duke.

Diane - Final 4 Duke, Memphis, Ohio State, UCONN. Champ Duke over Ohio State.

Doggie - Final 4 Texas, UCLA, Boston College, UCONN. Champ UCONN over Duke.

Heather - Final 4 Duke, Gonzaga, Ohio State, North Carolina. Champ Duke over North Carolina.

Jota - Final 4 Duke, Kansas, Ohio State, UCONN. Champ UCONN over Duke.

Kaker - Final 4 Texas, Kansas, Villanova, UCONN. Champ Villanova oer Texas.

Krum #1 - Final 4 Texas, Gonzaga, Villanova, Illinois. Champ Texas over Illinois.

Krum #2 - Final 4 Texas, Memphis, Ohio State, UCONN. Champ Memphis over UCONN.

Krum #3 - Final 4 Duke, Gonzaga, Villanova, UCONN. Champ Duke over UCONN.

Nate - Final 4 Duke, Gonzaga, Ohio State, Tennessee. Champ Duke over Ohio State.

Nevey - Final 4 Duke, Kansas, Villanova, UCONN. Champ Villanova over Kansas.

Ray - Final 4 Duke, Memphia, Boston College, North Carolina. Champ Duke over North Carolina.

Sherman - Final 4 Texas, UCLA, Villanova, UCONN. Champ UCONN over Texas.

The General - Final 4 Duke, UCLA, Villanova, UCONN. Champ Villanova over Duke.

Rickie - Final 4 Texas, Kansas, Ohio State, UCONN. Champ UCONN over Texas.

Tree - Final 4 Duke, UCLA, Ohio State, North Carolina. Champ Duke over North Carolina. (Homer)

Truz - Final 4 Duke, Kansas, Boston College, UCONN. Champ UCONN over Duke.

Villa - Final 4 Duke, Memphis, Villanova, UCONN. Champ Duke over Villanova.

Any other requests General?

Weekend Update

Friday I had a rough day at the office. I met Nate and Preston for lunch at Paulie’s Pub. It was a bit obnoxious. Nate and I were sitting next to each other and the music was so loud that Nate and I couldn’t hear each other over Loverboy and Aerosmith pumping through the speakers. Fun. The place was pretty busy nonetheless; it shouldn’t take an hour to get some chicken fingers and cheese curds. I just wanted to watch some basketball. I got back to the office late and I stunk like an ashtray. Once I got home from work, Jay stopped by and we had a couple beers and watched college basketball. Then we stopped over by Nate to play some ping pong. Around 10:00 p.m. we decided that we would go down to O’Brien’s. My friend, Andy, was going to be down there and I told him I would meet him out there. The highlight of O’Brien’s was just before we walked in, a bouncer was carrying a patron out the door in a sleeper hold. And it appeared that the bouncer applied the hold correctly because when he dropped the guy down on the sidewalk he was out. I should have gotten a picture of that. Saturday afternoon, I took my nephew, Jared, shopping for his birthday. He is going to be 6 this week. I bought Jared a new bike. When we got it home I pumped up the tires for him and then I took it for a spin. The bike is quite a bit bigger than his old one, so it looks like there is going to have to be a bit of a learning curve since he fell twice in the first minute. Saturday night we went out to celebrate Jay’s birthday at County Claire. Around 1 in the morning Nate and I were sort of hungry, and since we were downtown, that would mean that we were close to Oakland Gyros. I don’t think I can overstate how much I enjoy eating there. And it always seems to taste so much better at 1 or 2 in the morning. Sunday I spent the majority of the day cleaning my house and watching basketball. Sunday night was the Coldplay concert. My friends and old roommates, Mark and Suzanne, bought tickets ahead of time. And Shauntelle and I were going to scalp tickets. I managed to get some lower level $80 seats for $20 a piece. Then once in the concert Shauntelle and I moved to some better open seats. We ended up being on the side even with the front of the stage and about 15 rows back. Really good seats, and I was pleasantly surprise at how good the band was. So if you live in Fort Wayne or Columbia, and Coldplay is slotted to come to town, I highly recommend going to the show.


Round 2 is over with and everyone’s bracket has been highly screwed up. Krum kudos to you, I have no idea how you picked Bradley over Pitt but you did. Dan, Coonen and Tree, nice work, all three of you nailed 11 sweet 16 teams.

Heather has have been mathematically eliminated from winning the top prize but is still in the running 2nd and 3rd. Nate and Diane are both eliminated from winning any of the top three places.

Before I get to the current standings let me get the deadbeat list out of the way. The following are deadbeats:
Borky, Dan, Diane, Heather, Kaker, Krum, Nevey, Ray, Sherman, The General, Truz, and Villa.

Here are the current standings and points:
1st: 49 points, Tree
2nd: 44 points, Bubs, Krum #2, Krum #3
3rd: 43 points, Borky, Doggie, Krum #1, Rickie
4th: 42 points, Coonen, Nevey
5th: 41 points, The General
6th: 40 points, Dan, Heather, Sherman
7th: 39 points, Jota, Ray, Villa
8th: 38 points, Truz
9th: 37 points, Kaker
10th: 35 points, Nate
11th: 34 points, Diane

Here are the standings for possible points:
1st: 94 points, Krum #3
2nd: 93 points, Sherman
3rd: 92 points, Villa
4th: 91 points, Bubs
5th: 90 points, Dan, Doggie, Krum #2
6th: 88 points, The General
7th: 86 points, Krum #1
8th: 85 points, Borky, Coonen
9th: 84 points, Truz
10th: 83 points, Nevey, Tree
11th: 82 points, Rickie
12th: 80 points, Kaker
13th: 78 points, Jota
14th: 77 points, Heather, Ray
15th: 69 points, Nate
16th: 66 points, Diane

Sunday, March 19, 2006


Hello Fort Wayne!!! Having a good weekend? I hope so.

Gamblers, listen up. Here are the standings after day 1 of round 2. The maximum point total you could have would be 48.
1st: 36 points, Tree
2nd: 35 points, Borky, Doggie, Krum #1
3rd: 34 points, Bubs, Krum #2, Krum #3
4th: 33 points, Me, The General
5th: 32 points, Coonen, Heather, Nevey
6th: 31 points, Jota, Ray, Villa
7th: 30 points, Sherman
8th: 29 points, Nate
9th: 28 points, Dan, Diane, Truz
10th: 27 points, Kaker

I am having some problems with the blog site. I am sure you are all crushed but I couldn't upload pictures this morning. Hopefully later I will be able to get on and get a picture up. I am going to scalp tickets for the Coldplay concert tonight so I might not get today's results in until late tonight or tomorrow morning.

Saturday, March 18, 2006

A really long DOT story, but worth the read

June 17, 2005

On Wednesday I spoke with Nura about what was going on the project. I told her that there was some EBS (Excavation Beyond Surface) going on hear the batch plant. And she replied with where is that. We are a month into a project and she doesn’t know where the batch plant is. For those of you who don’t know, other than Nura, a batch plant is where they produce the concrete for the job. The batch plant is rather large and stands 3 or 4 stories up I the air. It is pretty hard to miss. Apparently my staff doesn’t drive the job everyday. I don’t know how many times I have had to tell either of the idiots to drive the project at least once a day. Of all the things these two idiots that I worked with either did or did not do during the project, I think this is the most perplexing. Our job as DOT staff is to monitor the project. I understand that the project is about 4 miles long. If you don’t drive the project from end to end every day how do you know what is going on? But throughout the project I had to constantly remind both of them to do this. I don’t understand. Yesterday, around 1 in the afternoon, I asked my staff to go out to the northeast corner of the intersection of the Oconomowoc Bypass and CTH Z and make a mark on the water hydrant where it will intersect with the new shoulder / ditch slope. I checked in with them at around 2:00 as they were carrying back the surveying equipment and they said that they had everything under control. Although they told me that they had not yet made a mark on the hydrant. This task is a matter of setting up a level, shooting an elevation at the bench mark, then shooting an elevation at the hydrant, reading a plan to find out the design elevation of the ground where the hydrant is, performing a math and making a mark on the hydrant pipe. There is no way that this could take any longer than 10 minutes for two competent people to accomplish. But as you may have ascertained from my previous stories, we are not dealing with two competent people. At 3:00 I got a call from Nura, asking for help on getting the mark on the hydrant. I couldn’t believe that this could take so long. I told her I would meet her out there and we would set things up. I let her set up the tripod. I want to stop here for a second, it has been an hour and they don’t even have the tripod set up. What? Anyhow back to setting up the tripod, at first it appeared that she was setting it up for a midget. I told her if she wanted to bend over to look through the level, that was up to her. Personally, I like to set up the tripod and level so that the eye piece is well at eye level. Then I watched her level the level. That was entertaining. In case you might not know, the level sits a top the tripod and there are 3 leveling screws, and a bubble on top that you use to make sure that the level is level. She leveled it in one direction and said that was it. Are you kidding me? I have always been taught that you level it in one direction and then you swivel the level around 180 degrees and make sure it is level again. Normally you need to do this a number of times to fine tune it. Mind you that Nura had told me that she had done some survey work in the past. You could have fooled me. We finally got this take done. Then I took Nura and Sue on a little field trip because neither of them had driven the project yet that day. 3:30 in the afternoon and neither of them had any idea what work or what contractors were working on half of the project. As we were driving I asked them, what contractors are working today. Nura couldn’t tell me a single contractor, Sue got two. Hardy Geo Tech was one of the contractors who is doing the surveying. They were actually doing the surveying at CTH Z while Nura and I were shooting the pipe. She didn’t even know what they were doing. I told her those little pink flags (the flags are attached to spikes pounded in to the base coarse, and the flags have the elevation of the roadway written) don’t just grow up out of the ground. What work are they doing today? How far are they on the Lang Road excavation? I didn’t get a good answer out of either on either question. Obviously neither had been out on the project at all today. We drive down to the batch plant, because I honestly believe that neither has been to the borrow pit or by the batch plant. We stop at the end of the concrete pavement at the west end of the project. What station are we at? Nura said that she didn’t see any stake. I said that you shouldn’t need a stake, this is the beginning of the project, you should know where the project begins and ends, it is written on the front page of the plan in fairly large lettering. Sue did know this one. I showed them the borrow pit. I told them that when they are done with it, that I want it cross sectioned. And that they were going to do it. Sue wanted to know how they were going to get down there. I said walk. The slopes really aren’t that steep. Then we went over to East Lang road, where neither of them had been since Peterson started working in this area. They were working in the cut section. I drove up to the cut section, next to a lathe pounded in the shoulder that read “C 6.9”. “Nura, how big of a cut are they making here?” The “C” stands for cut, and the 6.9 stands for 6.9 feet. I.E. they have to lower the shoulder 6.9 feet. She had no idea. She is an engineer and no idea about anything on the project. A month into the project she has no clue. This is my help.

Picture of the Day

For those non gamblers who come to my site for my interesting pictures and entertaining banter, I apologize for not getting a picture up yesterday. Last night when I jumped on line the web site was down. But as a treat I have a series of pictures for you.
This is my friend Jesus, he is a cliff diver in Mexico. More exactly Matzalan. When I was down in Mexico on a cruise for my high school prom date, Joy Gibb's, wedding, we had a stop in Matazalan. We toured the city and came across these cliff divers. This was back on August 16th, 2002.Here is a veiw from above and also part of my thumb. Jesus told me that that water is about 7 feet deep. I had actually entertained the idea of jumping in but opted against it. I was feeling a bit dangerous, since the day before I did some bungee jumping.This is a pretty cool view of the cliff diving, if you want to call it that.


I tried to get these results out last night but there was a problem with the blog site. But the Death Star is once again running and operational. And since we are back on line, what is going on with Kansas? You win 15 of the last 16 games, run the Big 10 tournament and then drop your opening game to Bradley. Bradley!!! March Madness, more like March are you F'ing kidding me? Fort Wayne what do you think about that? Alright, I am done venting, but if another one of my Final Four Teams goes down this weekend, the pool is off. Here are the results / standings after the first round.

1st: 25 points, Doggie and Me (No, it isn't fixed)
2nd: 24 points, Bubs, Krum #2, Krum #3, Tree
3rd: 23 points, Borky, Jota, Krum #1, Ray, Villa
4th: 22 points, Diane, Nevey
5th: 21 points, The General
6th: 20 points, Coonen, Heather, Sherman, Truz
7th: 19 points, Kaker, Nate
8th: 18 points, Dan

Now I also calculated everyones remaining possible points, so if you were to get the rest of your sheet entirely correct this is how many points you would score.
1st: 110 points, Krum #2, Krum #3, Tree
2nd: 108 points, Coonen
3rd: 107 points, Krum #1, The General
4th: 106 points, Doggie
5th: 105 points Villa
6th: 104 points Dan, Heather, Me
7th: 102 points Borky, Bubs, Ray, Sherman
8th: 96 points Nate
9th: 94 points Diane, Kaker
10th: 93 points Jota, Truz
11th: 89 points Nevey (Kansas in the finals hurt you a bit)

Now I have done some research for all of you, here are the winning point totals for my pool in years past, 2002 (70 points), 2003 (69), 2004 (78), 2005 (82). Again, I would double check your sheets against the numbers that I posted to make sure there wasn't a mistake. And with Kansas out, I need a dark horse to win the Oakland Region. Come on Pittsburgh.

Thursday, March 16, 2006


It is that magical time of year again. And as the manager of BW3's told me today during lunch, "It is like Christmas!!" So let the games begin. There are 21 sheets entered into my pool, 3 by Krum. So here is how the payouts will work.

1st place will pay out with $150
2nd place will pay out with $50
3rd place will get their money back $10

After Day 1 here are the standings:
1st: 14 points, Krum with all three of this sheets having 14 out of 16 games correct. Krum I was mocking you earlier, but it looks like you might be on to something, but we have a long way to go yet.
2nd: 13 points, Borky, Bubs, Dogger,Nevey and Me
3rd: 12 points Diane, Ray, Tree
4th: 11 points Coonen, Heather, Jota, Nate, Sherman, Villa
5th: 10 points Kaker, The General, Truz
6th: 8 points Dan (Marquette to the Sweet 16, good call. I am glad they lost and I picked it.)

Also, it has happened, although very rarely, that I have made a mistake in the past. If I were you, I would double check your sheet against the results that I post. Points are the same as always, points increase with the rounds, I.E. 1 point for 1st round games, 2 points for 2nd round and so on.

Picture of the Day

This picture was taken August 11th down by Miller Park. Nate and I were down there launching rockets, no that is not a euphemism, and one of the rockets flew east into the valley where they are / were trying to clean things up. As we were looking for the rocket I happened upon this dozer and thought this would be a funny picture of me with all of my might pushing a dozer. I do recall that Shelly was with us as well. Preston may have been there too.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Picture of the Day

This picture was taken on September 20th 2000 in Virginia. This was a dinosaur museum that I happened upon.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

P.E. Exam

It has been a while since I have complained about my studying for my P.E. Exam so I thought I would take care of that tonight. Even though I really have no right to complain since my study habits have been none existant as of late. I guess trips to Colorado and Vegas don't help much either. I had one of my refresher class tonight. Tonight's topic was Steel Design. I didn't even take a single Steel Design class in college, how am I suppose to learn all about the topic in one night. Well I didn't. At one point in the class, someone asked the instructor about where a certain quantity for one of the variables came from. It was the Modulus of Elasticity of Steel. The instructor answered the question in a surprised manner stating "It is rather well known that the Modulus of Elasticity of Steel, E = 29,000 ksi." Oh really I didn't know that. Being that I was lost, I thought I would throw out a couple more terms and topics that I should be well familiar with by the time the exam rolls around in 5 weeks. The operative word there is "should".

Hydrostatic Pressure
Bernoulii Equation
Reynolds Number
Hydraulic Jump
Darcy's Law
Stoichiometric Reactions
Unconfined Compressive Strength Test
Varignon's Theorem
Transverse Truss Member Loads
Centroid of an Area
Radius of Gyration
Moment of Inertia of an Area
Mohr's Circle
Poisson's Ratio
Hooke's Law
Three Moment Equation
Parallel Axis Theorem
Newton's First, Second and Third Laws of Motion
Ohm's Law
Cash Flow Diagrams
Depreciation Methods

I am hoping that you don't look at this list and say, "I know all of that stuff." Those are just from a quick glance at the book. And those cover the topcis of Hydraulics, Structures, Ecomonic, Physics, Chemistry, Materials, etc. As surprising as you may find this, everything on that list does ring a bell and even more surprisingly I did at one time or another know all of that stuff. The problem is that that bell hasn't been rung in nearly 10 years. So I should stop typing and get to studying. Wish me luck.

Picture of the Day

I don't have a date on this picture. I think it was 1999 or 2000. This was in the parking lot at the Dave Matthews Concert in Dallas at the State Fair Grounds. I flew down and stayed with and then went to the concert with my good communist friend, Dave "The General" Stegall. At that time Dave lived in Killeen, Texas, which is about 2.5 - 3 hours south of Dallas. On the way to the State Fair Grounds, I asked Dave if he knew where we were going, his reply, "Don't worry about it, I know exactly where we are going. You can eat those directions." 20 minutes later we were at the airport, on the opposite side of the city of Dallas from where we were suppose to be. Anyhow this picture was taken in the parking lot. Security was walking by as Dave and I were tailgating, i.e. throwing around a football and drinking Long Island Ice Teas, and I couldn't resist getting a picture with them. Dave had his safety vest in the trunk of his car that he wore when he went running at night. So I grabbed that and security and got this picture. That one guy sure was short. On a side note, after the show the plan was to drive back to Killeen. We decided that Dave would take the first shift and drive to Waco and I would then drive the rest of the way. Since Dave had already proven his mastery with directions, I helped navigate him out of the city of Dallas and on to the correct interstate headed for Waco, then I fell asleep. I woke up at 4 in the morning to see that we were parked on a on ramp to the interstate. I woke up Dave and asked him what happened. He said that he drove to Waco but didn't want to wake me up. I thought, "Wow that Dave is a great guy, he let me sleep a little longer." We switched seats and then I started driving. I wasn't on the road for a mile or two when I saw the first mileage sign "Waco 105 miles". Apparently, the night before, as soon as I feel asleep, Dave pulled over at the next exit. I ended up driving the whole way back to Killeen. Thanks again Dave.

Monday, March 13, 2006

DOT Stories

July 19, 2005

Nura and I were finishing laying out the Type 1 signs. The last sign was in the median so the calculations that Nura did will not work and we have to split the difference and put the sign in the middle. The S distance given in the plan is the distance between legs, in this case the S is 10.8 feet. We measure the median and it is 50 feet wide. Nura says to me, “The sign it 18 feet wide so we should add 9 feet to 25.” I say Nura, “You understand what we are doing here right? We are trying to figure out where the legs of the sign go. What is the “S” distance?” She says “10.8 feet.” Then she starts writing something down. I realize at this point that she has no idea what she is doing, nor does she have any understanding of the big picture here. I hope it is obvious to you that to figure out the correct distances, that we needed to take the “S” distance (10.8) divide that by 2 to get 5.4 feet. And then add and subtract 5.4 feet from 25. I waited about 6 or 7 seconds and finally I say, “So we need to make them at 30.4 and 19.6 feet.” Nura looks at me with an amazed look on her face and says “You were able to figure that out in your head?”

Picture of the Day

This picture was taken June 11th 2000 at Gund Arena in Cleveland, Ohio. This was my first and only WNBA Game. That is why I am laughing / smiling in the picture, because I can't believe I actually went to a WNBA game. As you can see they really packed them in for the event.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

DOT Stories

I am not sure if you are enjoying these work stories or not. But as I reread them, I am continually astonished at the stupidity. I really did deserve a raise.

July 14, 2005

I asked Nura to determine the locations of the signs that go into the concrete medians. This needs to be done before the concrete is placed so that when the signs are to be installed after the concrete has been poured there is a hole in the concrete to put the sign in. This saves everyone a lot of time and energy, otherwise a hole would need to be cut in the concrete. I told Nura that I didn’t know how to exactly lay them out as far as the distance each sign should be from either end of the median, or how far back they should be from the curb. I told her to look at the standard detail drawings and maybe call Tom Heydel (Tom puts together and approves all of our sign plans) if she has any questions. Later in the day we drive by the intersection and I say to her, “Did you lay out the median signs?” She says yes. As we drive by I noticed that the locations that she marked out were right in the middle of the median. I asked her if the signs go right in the middle of the median as they are marked. She says “No, the edge of the sign should be 2 feet from the edge of the curb.” I ask her “So why does it look like it is marked in the middle of the median.” Her reply was “Oh I didn’t know you wanted the signs to be located off of the curb as well.” I.E. she marked the signs longitudinally but not latitudinally.

Now please realize that had I not come along with my infinite wisdom, check that while I do have infinite wisdom all anyone needed was a little common sense to figure out that she had the mark in the wrong location. Anyhow had I not explained to her why we need the correct location for these signs, I would have had a 2 foot by 2 foot hole in the concrete about 3 feet away from the spot where I would have had to have the contractor saw through 6 inches of concrete so that we could put the sign in the right location. I am not sure if I mentioned it before or not, but Nura and I were the same engineering classification at the DOT and in fact she had seniority over me.

Picture of the Day

This picture was taken in 1993, at my parents house in Wales, Wisconsin. Eat your heart out Micheal Jordan. You want some mad hops. Here they are. I must be a good four feet in the air. That is right. All real. No photo shop or anything.

Saturday, March 11, 2006

More Fun with the DOT

July 13, 2005

I asked Nura to determine the locations and lengths of the legs on the Type 1 signs on our project. These Type 1 signs are the big green signs that you see on the interstate that indicate ramps ahead or whatever. The calculation of these legs are seemingly an easy task to do. I printed out the standard detail drawings for the installation. Ideally the edge of the sign should be 30 feet from the edge of the travel lane. In the plan it lists the size of the sign and the recommended distance between the legs. For sign number 1, the size is 22 X 11, (the width of the sign (L) is 22 feet) and the distance between legs (S) was given as 13.2 feet. On the plan which I printed out it gives the simple formula for calculating the offsets for the legs. For those in the cheap seats the legs should be at (30 + (L-S)/2) and (30+ (L-S)/2+S). So real quick that would be 34.4 and 47.6. I told Nura before we went out to locate the signs that she should calculate the locations and also set up a spreadsheet to make things easier because we also had to shoot elevations at these locations. And if you set things up ahead of time especially in a neat format like in a spreadsheet, life will be good. So Nura says that she has everything calculated. We go out to the first sign and she has leg offset numbers of 45.4 and 58.6. We mark out these locations and I say, “These look way off. Let’s go for a drive.” I had never calculated the offsets for these type of signs before either. I have always found that if you have a question about how something is done. Find a place where this task has been done and copy it. Also the same philosophy I used to get through Linear Systems Analysis in college. We drive out to Highway 16, an established and well traveled road for years, and start measuring the distance from the edge of travel lane to the first leg. We get to one that is around 34 feet to the leg and 30 feet to the edge of the sign. Nura says to me “That seems about right, because it is 30 feet to the edge of the sign.” Now mind you at this point, I have assumed that Nura is an engineer who should be able to do come simple adding, subtracting and division, so I did not check any of her work. So I do some quick math in my head and say to Nura, “Do you mean to tell me that the sign hangs 15.4 feet from the first leg of the sign?” Nura replies to me, “You know what, I think I made a mistake.” On the drive back to the project, Nura asked me if I thought she had no common sense at all. I said no, of course not.

Picture of the Day

This picture was take November 7th, 1996 in the Village of Shorewood. They had asked me to burn some film during my college internship with the Village of Shorewood. So I went down to one of the stores where they were paving a parking lot and took some pictures. It took a little coaxing but the driver finally agreed to let me in the cab and to take my picture.

Fort Wayne, Columbia or Milwaukee?

Because of my two favorite readers, I have officially become obsessed with Fort Wayne, Indiana and Columbia, Missouri. I have done a little research on Mr. Internet to find some fact / factoids on my two new favorite cities. I wanted to do a little compare and contrast with these two fair cities and see how they stack up with Milwaukee the Great Place by a Great Lake.

Population (2000)
Milwaukee: 596,974 - 47.8% Men, 52.2% Women
Fort Wayne: 205,727 - 48.4% Men, 51.6% Women
Columbia: 84,531 - 47.9% Men, 52.1% Women
Advantage: Milwaukee. I have to go where the women are at.

Milwaukee: 634 feet
Fort Wayne: 781 feet
Columbia: 758 feet
Advantage: No one. Unless you have mountains to ski on, this factoid means nothing. Plus I like saying factoid.

Land Area
Milwaukee: 96.1 square miles
Fort Wayne: 79.0 square miles
Columbia: 53.1 square miles
Advantage: Milwaukee. I guess because there is just more room to move around in.

Median Resident Age
Milwaukee: 30.6 years
Fort Wayne: 32.8 years
Columbia: 26.8 years
Advantage: Columbia. I have to be where there are young people like myself. Apparently I am only .8 years over the average age. That is good.

Median Household Income (2000)
Milwaukee: $32,216
Fort Wayne: $36,518
Columbia: $33,729
Advantage: Fort Wayne. I like money.

Median House Value (2000)
Milwaukee: $80,400
Fort Wayne: $74,600
Columbia: $118,500
Advantage Columbia. I like houses, but hate taxes.

Milwaukee: White Non-Hispanic (45.4%) Black (37.3%) Hispanic (12.0%) Other (5.3%)
Fort Wayne: White Non-Hispanic (73.1%) Black (17.4%) Hispanic (5.8%) Other (3.7%)
Columbia: White Non-Hispanic (80.4%) Black (10.9%) Hispanic (2.1%) Other (6.6%)
Advantage: I am not touching that one.

Milwaukee: German (20.9%), Polish (9.6%), Irish (6.3%), Italian (2.9%), English (2.6%), Norwegian (2.0%).
Fort Wayne: German (27.6%), Irish (10.5%), English (7.6%), United States (7.0%), French (3.8%), Italian (2.3%).
Columbia: German (25.7%), Irish (13.5%), English (12.9%), United States (7.2%), Italian (2.9%), French (2.7%).
Advantage: I am German, Welsh and Norwegian. Columbia has the most Irish, so that must be a city of lushes. I am mentally debating if that is a good or bad thing. Based on my past behavior I would say that is a good thing. But I am going to go with Fort Wayne on this one.

Milwaukee: High school or higher: 74.8% Bachelor's degree or higher: 18.3% Graduate or professional degree: 6.0%
Fort Wayne High school or higher: 83.2% Bachelor's degree or higher: 19.4% Graduate or professional degree: 6.5%
Columbia High school or higher: 91.1% Bachelor's degree or higher: 50.5% Graduate or professional degree: 24.0%
Advantage: Columbia. Big time. 50% with bachelor degrees! Good for you. We all know how smart I am. I would fit right in.

Marital Status
Milwaukee: Never married: 41.4% Now married: 38.3% Separated: 2.7% Divorced: 11.1%
Fort Wayne: Never married: 30.3% Now married: 47.6% Separated: 1.9% Divorced: 12.9%
Columbia Never married: 43.9% Now married: 41.7% Separated: 1.3% Divorced: 9.0%
Advantage: Columbia. More available women

Crime (2003) Based on per 100,00
Milwaukee: Murders (18.3), Rapes (41.2), Robberies (480.4), Assaults (346.1), Burglaries (1011.9), Auto Thefts (1043.8), Crime Index 573.5 (U.S. Average329.7) [Good God are we having some major problems here. How am I still alive?]
Fort Wayne: Murders (9.2), Rapes (57.4), Robberies (172.1), Assaults (136.6), Burglaries (1063.5), Auto Thefts (379.1), Crime Index 374.3 [Congratulationsns you beat us in burglaries]
Columbia: Murders (2.4), Rapes (20.1), Robberies (99.4), Assaults (377.4), Burglaries (543.0), Auto Thefts (207.0), Crime Index 294.8
Advantage: Columbia, unless of course you want to die.

Notable Natives
Milwaukee: Actor Gene Wilder, Murder Jeffrey Dahmer (yes that came up on the web search), basketball players Devin Harris, and Chris Mihm, Actress Heather Graham.
Fort Wayne: Basketball Player Brad Miller, Hockey Player Dale Purinton and I didn't recognize anyone else.
Columbia: Mathematician Norbert Wiener and that was about it and I don't even know who he is. What did he do discover the Pythagoreaniam theory?
Advantage: Milwaukee. Come on we have a serial murderer.


Advantage: Columbia, but not by much. They all look like they suck as far as weather goes.

Now for the intangibles, which by the very definition should not be quantifiable.
Milwaukee: 2 Professional Sports teams and Summerfest.
Fort Wayne: I have no idea what you have.
Columbia: Believe it or not I have been there, once when I was 24. It was nearly impossible to rent a car. Small airport. The people were very nice. The University of Missouri is there. That is a Big 12 School. Although I don't know how hard you cats can party.
Advantage: Milwaukee

So what is the final tally
Milwaukee: 4
Fort Wayne: 2
Columbia: 6

Friday, March 10, 2006

Picture of the Day

This picture was taken November 7th, 1999 in Oslo, Norway. This was another instance of walking by people taking a group picture, and them me offering to take the picture for them if only I could get one with the group. I am sure I did wonders for World diplomacy and the image of Americans with this one. These people thought I was absolutely nuts.

No Reply at All

Well Fort Wayne and Columbia, I see that you both check out the blog again and didn't leave me any information. That is alright, I am just happy that you are regular readers. Thanks for your loyal patronage.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Who Are You?

I have had my blog since August. I think that those that stop by and take a look at my pictures and read my stories find it entertaining. I appreciate all those that stop by and I appreciate those that make comments even more. In November I added a site meter to my blog. This keeps track of how many people check out my site on a daily, weekly, monthy, etc basis. I have just reached a milestone. Today the blog had it's 1000 visitor. Now I realize that there are a number of repeat readers. Also on my site meter, it displays the locations of all of the visitors. The site only holds 100 visitors at a time and then deletes them. I really don't have much all that interesting in my life, other than making elaborate spreadsheets for illegal gambling ventures, so in early February I started keeping track of all of the locations. As of today, and since I have been keeping track over the last month and a half, I have had visitors from 21 of the 50 states. Obviously my goal is to make it to all 50 states. And world wide I have had visitors from 9 different countries, I am guessing many of them by accident. Admittedly I do have a lot of friends around the country, and I recognize many of the cities and states that have visited my blog. However, two of my most loyal readers come from cities that I am fairly certain I do not know anyone whom lives there. And those two cities are, Fort Wayne, Indiana and Columbia, Missouri. Now if you are reading this and you live in Fort Wayne, Indiana or Columbia, Missouri, then you are one of the two persons that I am talking about. I just want to know is who you are and how you know me, or if you just stumbled across my blog. If you don't want to post a comment, drop me an email. I have been to Columbia, Missouri but that was 8 years ago. And the only person I know in Missouri is Nate Phillip and I haven't talked to him in at least 6 years. Fort Wayne, Indiana, well I have never been.

More DOT Work

July 13, 2005
Now hold in mind that some of the errors that Nura has made have turned out to waste a large amount of time. This however didn’t waste of time, but is rather an example of just being clueless and not paying attention to her job. On our project we had a borrow pit, which the contractor was hauling out fill that the road was getting built upon. We took shots before they began excavation on the borrow pit. And now we had to take shots afterwards. This would give us the amount of borrow used. I had Nura holding the rod and going around to locations that I had marked out ahead of time. We took about 30 shots and the terrain around the borrow pit wasn’t the easiest to traverse. However at one such shot I looked through the level to see that she had the rod upside down. Again this was not a huge waste of time, but just an example of not paying attention to what is going on. She has one job to do and that is to hold a rod straight up and down on a mark the correct way and she couldn’t even do that. Maybe I am being a little over critical, but I have had the job of holding the surveying rod and always managed to get it right. And normally I was hung over when I was doing it.

Picture of the Day

I chose ths picture in honor of Barry Bonds and his recent and recurring steriod problems and publicity. Is it just me or does it appear that all of those drugs and fish paralizers he has taken over the years are starting to make him look a bit freakish. This picture was taken on May 17th, 2000 at Pac Bell Stadium, in San Francisco, California. I had been walking around the park since it is in a pretty location, i.e. right on the Bay. This group was getting a picture taken I told them that I would take the picture for them, then insisted that I get one with them. You can sort of see the stadium in the background.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Picture of the Day

In honor of seeing Spider this weekend and then him ditching me on Sunday. Here is a Spider picture. Taken February 17, 1992 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. This is legendary Minnesconsin Tour Number 1. Matt, Spider and Justus with me in the back.

Notice to all Gamblers

I have sent out an earlier email to my regular gamblers, but as this is my main forum for communicating with others, I thought I would throw this out there in case I missed someone. I will again be holding a NCAA pool. And this year things will go extremely smooth. At least I think so. Last year as the tournament was going on. I wasted about half a day at the DOT putting together a spreadsheet with pull down menus that automatically calculates all of the points as long as you update the results. So if you are interested and I haven't sent you an email, send me an email with your email address. My work email is : It will be $10 a sheet. And I will decide the pay outs once I get everyone's sheets in. I will probably pay out the top two or three finishers.

Surveying Class Part 3

June 23, 2005

Today was another lesson in surveying. I needed to cross-section East Lang Road to get the quantities for Common Excavation. It should have been fairly simple, I had already measured out the offsets for the elevations shots at the slope intercept, the ditch line and the shoulder point. And I had done this exercise with my staff in the past, so it shouldn’t be too much of a chore. I asked Nura to come and help me and to hold the rod at all of the locations that needed shots, and in fact to simplify things, I painted marks where I wanted to take elevation shots. The “tricky” part about taking these shots is that the difference in elevation from the ditch line to the slope intercepts throughout the project is as much as 23 feet. This will require that the rod, which is a telescoping rod and can be expanded up to 25 feet, be expanded the entire 25 feet. To cut down on the walking I told Nura to start on the slope intercepts and then when she got to the end to shoot the ditch line and shoulder points, this would mean that she wouldn’t have to keep walking up and down the slope at each station, as the back slopes were rather larger and long. I also told her before we started that we will be shooting stations 606+50 to 612+00 (Every 50 feet). So when she starts, she goes to station 606+00. Not a real big deal, I just told her to move up a station, but you will find why this information is relevant later. So as we are taking the shots on the slope intercepts, Nura went past me, as I was set up in the middle of the area that we were shooting. I told Nura, that when we got to shooting the ditch line, to make sure that each section of the rod was totally extended and locked. I told her this because I knew she was going to screw this up. When I was getting the elevation on the third ditch line point, I noticed and sure enough the rod on one section was not pulled out all of the way. Not a real big deal. I went down and talked to Nura and showed her that the rod needs to be pulled out and locked so that we can get an accurate measurement. So we only had to re shoot the last three stations, nothing to get too worked up over. Now that was the second time I told Nura to make sure that each section was completely pulled out and locked. I would also like to state that I didn't say it to her in a mean or condecending manner. Normally you would think if you told someone something twice that they would remember it. We continued on and finished one side, then went across the road and shot the other side. Over the course of these shots, due to the elevation and because the rod is easier to carry when the rod is shortened up, Nura had been pulling out and collapsing sections on the rod. We get to the second to last station, I look through the level, and see that one section is not all the way pulled out. I walk down to Nura and she asks if something is wrong. I show her that the section was not pulled all the way out, and then upon further inspection, I noticed that the next section up wasn’t pulled all the way out. I told her to forget it and that all of our shots were junk and that we would have to re do it the next day. She asked if we could just reshoot the last shot. I asked her if there was any way she could tell me where was the last shot where she had the rod correct, and she couldn't. So our shots could have been off by at least a foot. I don't know if this sounds like a big deal to you or not, but a 1 foot difference over an area that is 50 foot by 100 feet could be as much at 185 yards. The following day I decided that it would be best to let Nura be and have Sue help me. I explained what we were doing and where we were taking shots. And after shooting the bench mark Sue did the exact same thing that Nura did the day before, she walks right up to station 606+00. This is right after I tell her that we are shooting stations 606+50 to station 612+00. Is it me? Am I missing something? Is this a joke? I know what you may be thinking, and yes, they both are that dumb.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Vegas Part II

I forgot a picture or two. Here goes.

These are the Lions at the MGM. They are laying on top of a tunnel thing you can walk under.Here you can see what I was talking about. The Lions were real active at this time.This is the New York New York. I slept on the floor here and also lost a couple hundred dollars here.This is my Uncle Dave. After the wedding we came back to the room to change and he said that he was ready to go, but he sort of looks like he was ready to just go to sleep. Call me crazy.

This is the Paris Hotel at night.

Looking out at the Wynn at night from the Rivieria Penthouse.

The Venetian.

The Mirage.

Picture of the Day

This picture was taken around 2001. I think Nate took it. But this was pretty much an average weeknigth at the Murder House when Nate and Andy both lived with me. Jay was living across the street. As you can see Jay had his towel with him. He was about to take a shower but one of his roommates was in there so he stopped by.

Monday, March 06, 2006

Vegas Baby, Vegas

The trip out to Vegas was a great time. I got in to town late and I had Spider pick me up at the airport around 10 – 10:30 p.m. We stopped at Spider’s house and then went to the New York, New York Casino where my Aunt Marilyn, Uncle Dave, Cousin Kim and Kim’s boyfriend, Jake were staying. I dropped off my bag off the room, and didn’t return until 5 in the morning. Dave and Marilyn said that I could crash on their floor. When I got in I didn’t want to wake anyone up, so I did exactly what I said I was going to do. I slept on the floor, no blanket, no pillow, just me and the carpet. A little brutal, but that was the plan all along so I have no room to complain. We were all up around 7:00 a.m. Later in the morning we got motivated and went to Denny’s for what was possibly one of the worst dining experiences I have ever had to endure. We were seated in the corner and after waiting at least 10 minutes before anyone came over for a drink and by surveying the wait staff we realized that we didn’t have a waiter. Finally we got a waiter over to our table but he was far from impressive. We were in Denny’s for nearly an hour. Over the course of waiting for our meal, we all thought we were going to lose my Uncle Dave. We were all sitting at the table and he just started sweating like he was in a sauna. Then he put his head on Marilyn’s shoulder. Then he laid down on the bench. I didn’t know if he was going to throw up, pass out, or have a heart attack. In fact I was so worried about Dave’s well being that I thought better of taking a picture of him in such a horrible state. Which just goes to show what bad shape he was in, since if someone is in a vulnerable state, I am the first one taking pictures. Dave powered through and survived. The rest of early Saturday afternoon was spent on the casino floor. We all headed down to Caesars Palace for the wedding at 4:30. It was nice and short. Just the way I like them. We grabbed some drinks and then went to one of the restaurants in the hotel for dinner. The highlight of the dinner was Marilyn telling her child raising stories. My favorite of which was the time that she took the kids’ Nintendo away and smashed it with a sledge hammer. I will have to tell that story another day. After dinner, we headed back to New York, New York. We changed and were preparing to hit the casino again. When my cousin, Andrea called. She staying at the Rivieria and was planning on catching a bus up to our hotel. But when she checked into her hotel, she found that somehow she had got booked in the Penthouse suite of the hotel. She said it was just great and decided that she was going to stay in her room the rest of the night. I told her that she is going to have a visitor that night, because if she was in the Penthouse, I wasn’t going to be sleeping on the floor. After a rough Thursday night, and only 2 hours of sleeping on the floor the night before, I ran out of gas pretty early. At around 1 in the morning, I started making my way from New York, New York to the Rivieria. I jumped on the bus and the Strip was just a mess. It was close to 2 by the time I got to Andrea’s room. Well she wasn’t lying, it was the Penthouse. She gave me the grand tour of the place and then I crashed on the couch. I was suppose to hang out with Spider all day Sunday, but he pulled up short and had to work. Funny he is always asking me when I am going to come down, and then when I do he ends up working. And I did give him at least 3 weeks notice. Nice work Spider. Andrea and I both had flights out late Sunday night / Sunday morning. Andrea and I spent the day touring a good share of the Strip. We went down to Fremont Street then checked out the Wynn, Venetian, Harrah’s, The Sahara, and I think there was another one or two in there as well. But after 15 hours of sleep in the previous 4 nights, I again ran out of energy pretty early. I got back to Milwaukee at 5:30 in the morning. And I was able to work almost 2 hours of sleep in before I had to report to work. I was struggling a bit at work today. All in all it was a great trip. Normally I lie about my gambling results. I was up and down all weekend. I was up no more than $400, and ended up losing in the end. I went down with $600 and came back with $100. However that does include the money I spent on food, cabs, parking and alcohol. So won’t be paying off those credit cards in full, but I didn’t take it in the shorts too bad. Well I won’t bore you any longer with my stories, here are the pictures.

Megan and Troy in the court yard at Caesar's.
Marilyn, Dave, Kim and Jake in front of the Dancing Waters at the Bellagio.
Andrea in the Penthouse, not a Penthouse.
The Penthouse had a bday (spelling?) and while I am posing here, I did use it when I was getting ready in the morning. I have to say, I was less than impressed.
The Michelle Pfeiffer pose on the Grand Piano.

In front of the waterfall at the Wynn.

Elvis getting a little friendly in one of the gift shops. I expect that out of Liberace, but not the King.

Me on top of a camel outside of the Sahara.

And unfortunately, I didn't get around to the Welcome to Las Vegas sign. Maybe next time.