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Riding in From Redmond

I woke up late and had no Capstone class today, so I went to work after my Networks class. As has become my custom when going to work in the afternoon, I took the 545 bus across the lake and then biked from the Bear Creek Park and Ride to Microvision. At work, I found a bug in the scanner that was mistaken for a bug in the ATF code; then I tightened up the ATF code a little anyway. After finishing up, I decided to bike home since most of my testing duties are on hold until additional units arrive.

I left work a little after 7:00, and started what I consider the real trip at 7:15, on the Sammamish River Trail heading North. Somewhere around Kenmore, the same trail becomes the Burke-Gilman Trail and heads back down to Seattle. The ride was very nice, but still challenging, as I was pushing myself. I completed the approximately 25 miles in about 1:45 before stopping at Safeway for some groceries. I think I could go somewhat faster on my road bike, as I feel that I lose a lot of energy to the shocks, larger tires, and more pliant frame of the mountain bike that I generally take to school. Oh, also, I’m always clipped in when I take the road bike, whereas I am only rarely clipped in on the mountain bike (which has dual platform/spd pedals).

Along the way, I passed the park where I started a geocaching expedition several years ago as well as numerous walkers, roller-bladers, and cyclists. A number of cyclists also passed me — I am pretty sure I was the swifted mountain bike on the trail, however. Somewhere past the halfway mark, I came across an area where a vast expanse of Lake Washington was visible with the Olympic mountains in the background. It was beautiful, but I didn’t think to take a picture at the time.

Once I got home, I made myself a burger for dinner — its been a long time since I’ve done that. It was quite good. I then settled in to watch the Mariners finish beating the Red Sox. A good day indeed.

Junior Returns to Town — And to Form

Well, I think Jon chose the right day to invite me and Maura to the ballpark to watch Ken Griffey Junior’s first baseball playing trip back to Seattle since he was traded to the Reds. The Reds had two runs — both on solo home runs by Griffey — but the Mariners won on some late game clutch hitting and an awesome suicide squeeze play. Here is a picture I managed to capture of Griffey hitting his second home run:

Griffey hits his second home run of the game

It was good to see him do better than his somewhat abysmal game one performance that I watched on TV. It was also nice to see the Mariners eek out a close one. I haven’t jumped on the bandwagon yet, but I certainly haven’t given up on the season either. Thanks to Jon for getting the tickets; we all enjoyed the game:

Ryan Will Survive; The NBA Might Not

A grand thank you to all my well-wishers on the last post. The update is that there is no rash developing — for which I am very grateful. The penicillin seems to have done its thing to the strep throat (Today I can swallow without pain for the first time since Saturday!) Don’t worry, I understand the need to continue the antibiotic regimen until its all gone; I will do so faithfully.

Things seem to have proceeded now to just cough (much more outwardly apparent, but also much easier to deal with than a sore throat; for me at least). I love being able to drink the proper amount of liquids without feeling the need to slam my hand into the wall with each gulp. Very refreshing!

In other news, I did defy the doctor today by skipping out on my Bioengineering “Design” class where some lady came to talk about avocados and their uses for sex (for serious), in order to go and ostensibly “watch” my utlimate frisbee team play. Of course, I had packed my cleats and I was wearing shorts under my pants, so I ended up playing some too. We lost; it was not our best effort or our best game by any means.

On a similar vein, the Sun’s playoff run ended tonight to the ghastly-to-watch San Antonio Spurs. Jazz-Spurs? Yawn. Probably the most boring western conference series possible. The NBA just lost out big time. Maybe they should change the rules so that Bruce Bowen’s hundreds of stealth hacks don’t go unpenalized. Just a thought for restoring balance to the game.

2007 NBA Semi’s

I would like to see the Cavs versus the Suns in the finals. The Cavs delivered today, but the Suns, not so much. The game wasn’t as much fun to watch as a normal Suns game either. Curses on the Spurs! I just hope that Phoenix gets its act together and starts having fun out there again.

Frisbee Unfantastic

I played Frisbee this morning, starting around 11:00 (it actually started at 10, but I had a late night). I had one really incredible catch, but I couldn’t seem to throw it right at all. Hopefully things will be back in order by Monday for the men’s game we have then.

In other news, I want the NBA playoffs to start.

Federer

I just stayed up to watch the depressingly short semifinal match between Roger Federer and Andy Roddick. I was of course rooting for Andy, but Roger put on another one of his seemingly routine show-for-the-ages routines, with a particularly amazing second set in which he blanked the hard-serving American 6-0. The rest of the match seemed to be on autopilot for Federer, who didn’t seem to even break a sweat.

Although Federer still has a few records to break (which I am convinced he will break), I am pretty sure that a tennis player of his dominance is unprecedented. Sure, he’s not perfect yet — he is weak on clay (thank goodness for Roland Garros), and he had a bad game in which Roddick broke him in the first set, but for much of the match it looked like a convincing reason that we don’t have college teams play in the NBA finals. One game might be fun, but after that it just wouldn’t be entertaining.

However, it is not in my nature to begrudge someone just for being good at what they do. I am in favor of great competition, but I prefer that competition to come from player’s rising to a higher level during competition rather than the better player having a bad day. So I want Andy to beat Federer — the sooner the better — but I want him to win by outplaying Federer at his best, and not because Federer has a bad day.

Until then, I guess we just have to wait for the French Open, when Nadal to call up his clay magic once again and restore a little bit of balance to the Tennis universe.

Soccer and Happiness

I am actually feeling really good right now. I turned in the second Bioengineering problem set of the week today, I’ve already finished my Wednesday CSE homework, my Operating Systems group amde good progress on our threads library, and I played in my first soccer game since 2003. I’m not in very good soccer shape, so I did what I always do after a sports game leaves me winded: I ate a really awesome meal (Teriyaki Tilapia, rice, veggies), and then I biked at high speeds around Green Lake. Except for the pot-smoking dopehead going the wrong direction in the wrong lane, it was a good ride.

On an interesting side note, my LED bike light doesn’t play nicely with my wireless cycling computer. When the light is in blinky mode, the computer reports a steady pace of 16mph plus the actual speed. When the light is on steady, the computer simply doesn’t count. Must be some of the energy efficient switching electronics wreaking havoc on the radio waves. So, I opted for safety over information (it was actually a hard choice — but the pot head should be happy), and I used my light instead of my bike computer. I used my wristwatch to time myself around the lake — 2.7 miles by previous measures — and I was able to complete it in about 9:30, about 17 mph if I’m doing my math right. I’ve one better, but I think thats pretty good for a late night ride.

Oh, and we tied the soccer game.