Sunday, November 15, 2009

Winter Ale and European Lager (and mix)


96 bottle of beer on my floor, 96 bottles of beer..

I think it's pretty safe to say my creative writing here is done, so I figure I'll write about homebrewing when I get the urge.

Tonight I bottled two beers. My 3rd time doing the same European Lager, and a Winter Ale I threw together.

When Kym got me the brewing equipment the guy at the store also sold her a simple Coopers European Lager and 3 lbs DME. It's a yellow beer drinker favorite and I've made it about every 3 months since I first started brewing early this year.

I wanted a Winter Ale and wasn't too into all the kits I looked at. They seemed too spicy or too dark. I wanted a mildly spicy Amber ale, so I made up my own.
1/2 Crystal 60
1/2 Carapils 20
6.6 lbs Amber liquid extract
1 oz Vanguard 60 min
1 oz Cascade 15 min
Wyeast 1028 London Ale
spices (10 min)
1/4 t nutmeg
1/2 t 1loves
1/2 t ginger
1 t vaniall extract
2 cinnamon sticks

O.G 1.050
F.G 1.016

When bottling tonight I decided to try something different. I took a gallon from each of the fermentors and mixed then and got about a case worth of a european winter lager/ale. We'll see how that turns out...


I love my homebrews but they don't taste as good as this Dogfish Punkin Ale did.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

What I did on my summer vacation

Every Christmas since Kenslee was born I made a video much like the following for my parents and Kym's parents. The Christmas one is longer and more fine tuned, but some of the lyrics to this song I like so much (not the vulgar ones) I decided to make a summer vacation video.


I'm undecided as to if I want to put it on the Christmas video for the grandparents because of those few lyrics, so I'm just putting it here for now.


video

1000th Post Extravaganza!!!!!!!!

woohoo, 1000 posts!

Friday, July 03, 2009

Benign is the greatest french sounding word in the English Language

Kym will probably get mad at me for posting this, but whatever.

A few months ago Kym started having blackouts. She'd lose vision for a few seconds, then be ok. After seeing the doctors a few times they ordered a cat scan. They found clogged sinuses, which is most likely the cause when combined with low blood pressure. But they also found pollups on her parotid gland. They ordered an MRI on that, where they found a tumor on her thyroid. The tumor has calcification, and with the help of google, we found some wonderful studies that told us that means there is an 80% chance the tumor is cancer. On Monday she had all three lumps biopsied. The results were released to the doctor yesterday and after about 10 calls and 24 brutal hours of waiting they called back, and we found all results are benign. One of the pollups showed benign results, but there was a limited sample so they want to do it again. Which sucks, but it's a thousand million times better than the way we felt a few days ago.

The fatality rate of thyroid cancer is really low, but we had to prepare for the worst. Imagine how you'd feel losing your spouse. Imagine a doucebag like me trying to raise two manical kids alone. It hasn't been a fun few weeks. But things are looking up. We have several appointments next week. She may still need sugery, or she may still need radioactive treatment. She still needs to get the sinus issues resolved. But, it's not cancer, and I can sleep now.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Rush Hour 5K (at SEI, Oaks, Perkiomen Trail)

aka, the best 5K ever. I did my best time ever, got 3rd in my division, and blah blah blah.

Here's the good part. Free beer and food. Bud, bud light, bud light lime. Beamish and Magners Irish Cider. Bluberry Vodka/sprite/lemonade drinks. Buffalo and BBQ wings, pasta, brownies, flank steak, Q-Doba tacos, pizza, more pasta, duck, bruschetta, fruit smoothies, fruit on a stick, cookies on a stick, ice cream.

And I ate and drank it all just to support a good cause. Damn, I'm good person.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Puma Complete Vectana Review

I bought a new pair of sneakers today that just hit the market. I got home and googled them and found nothing about them, almost no one even sells them yet, so I figured I'd write a review to help people out.




The Puma Vectana is a blue and grey sneaker. Blueish. And Grey. Grey, or Gray? Or is that Silver? I'm not sure.



As you can see, the Vectana has a webby looking thing in the front, so maybe they were made for spiders? I only got two in my shoebox, so that sucks that spiders would have to buy four pairs of them at $99.99 a pair.




But, wait, I just turned it around, and there's a tiger on the other side. Or, is that a cheetah? Hang on a sec while I google the cheetah girls to see if this is what they look like... nope, that's not a cheetah. Probably a jaguar. Definitely an animal that can run fast, because that's what these sneakers do. When I was little I could always run faster and jump higher when I got new sneakers and the same holds true here. In fact, these should be called Segways, not sneakers because they actually did all the running for me. I put them on, and they just go. I fell asleep halfway through my run tonight and they just kept on going and eventually brought me home. Not to my home because they don't know my neighborhood yet, but they brought me to a home. I can't complain about a sneaker that treats me that well.

But for real, if any runners do find this, I've never done a shoe review, so I wouldn't know where to begin. I've had 5 pairs of Puma Tenos in the past 3 years, so that's what I'm used to. These seem to be more cushioned in the heel, and I feel like there's less room in the toebox. I only ran 2 miles tonight, so I really won't be able to tell how much I like them until I get out for a few more runs.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

I went to New York and all I got were these pictures of New York

My brothers and dad met my cousin and uncle in Jersey City the other day and we hopped a train to NYC, then a subway to Yankee Stadium to watch the Phillies put on a clinic for the Yankees (in 11 innings). I planned to document the trip in pictures culminating in pictures of my bros and me and my dad in front of the field, but then didn't feel like taking those pics. So I'm left with these.







My uncle works on Wall Street, but the address they use is the side alley behind his building because he sells Catholic School Books and the nuns and priests wouldn't approve. Shhh, don't tell.










A-Rod striking out I'm sure.


The amount of tourists taking pictures of and looking at ground zero is absurd. There's tarps around 95% of it and people take pictures of the tarps. I don't get it.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Free Shit

On Thursday after 40 days and 40 nights of rain we finally got a break in the weather and I was able to mow the lawn. As I was mowing it, I grew more and more angry at my non-English speaking neighbor. He got a delivery of mulch in his driveway and it was the shittiest smelling mulch I've ever been a witness to. Add that to the fact that the grass I was cutting was about 7 feet high, and it was not a happy night for me. As I was finishing up my front lawn he started approaching me. We've lived there for 4 years and he's never crossed the street. I felt a fight coming on. He must have sensed my anger. I stopped my mower and prepared for some sort of ninja attack. He made a strange motion and said something I didn't understand. I got in the karate kid crane position when I realized he was offering me his mulch. "too much, too much" he said. I relaxed and spent the next hour wheeling mulch from his house to mine. I couldn't pass up free shit.

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Broadstreetrun

This weekend I ran the Broad Street Run. 10 miles through Philly. My goal was to do it under 70 minutes (under 7 minutes per mile). I crushed that time by 6 seconds. My original plan was to go out hard for the first 5 miles then try to hang on. I only made up to mile 3 hard, but I was still able to hold on and accomplish my goal.

To note:
It was raining most of the race and not ideal weather, but better than the previous Sunday's 90 degrees.
I'm still sore, and have one black toenail from the pressure of running hard in wet shoes, but mostly ok.
A certain local female weatherwoman who I wrote about 2 years ago (and still get 2-3 daily hits so I won't write her name) also ran the race. I was able to beat her 2 years ago (nevermind she was 6 months pregnant). This year she beat me by 5 minutes and was the 38th fastest female overall.
I finished in 1005th place out of 23,172.
Yesterday I was in 983rd place, but somehow 22 more people beat me a day later.
The governor of PA stands on the street 6 miles in giving high fives and I was 2 feet past him before realizing I missed getting a high five for the 3rd year in a row.
I've run 267 miles so far in 2009. I ran 265 in all of 2008.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

uggh

My current favorite thing with my daughter is when I do something and she says "You're the best daddy!" and I say "No, you're the best!", "no, daddy, YOU'RE the best." repeat, repeat, repeat. If I do it enough she gets angry at me because she wants me to be the best.

For the past 16 weeks I've been training to run the Broad Street Run which is this weekend. It's a 10 mile run through philly and will be my 3rd year running it. A few weeks ago my training runs magically started getting faster and faster and I'm really excited to see just how fast I can run the 10 miles. When I have to walk after 4 miles I'll know I went too hard.

Approximately once a day I think of something I should write about then forget what it is 5 minutes later.

I always told myself I'd never offically quit blogging, but a few more shitty posts like this and I think my blogger card will be revoked.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Previously on theytriedtomakemegoto

Summer of 2007 I started a private blog which I stopped updating a while ago. Here's how the story went...

My brother is an alcoholic and entered rehab
He got out of rehab in high spirits and high hopes
He started to put his life back together and met a girl in the program
She relapsed at the same time a bunch of friends had fatal relapses.

The story picks back up...

He stayed with the girl for a short period of time, but they're no longer together.
He made the Dean's List at the local community college a few semesters in a row.

A few months ago some people from Bucknell University visited his school looking for candidates to attend their school. They held a meeting for all people interested and as they started they said if at any time you don't feel you're right for the program you may get up and walk out. We're looking for someone who is not exactly right out of high school, and a bunch of people got up and left. We're looking for someone who has maybe not had the easiest road to get here, and a bunch of people got up and walked out. They continued to talk about the type of people they were searching for and my brother fit every criteria. He went on a few interviews and the field was narrowed down. He was still in the running. Two weeks ago he went on the final interview and today got a letter. He has been accepted to the program to finish his last two years at Bucknell. Free of tuition. Free room and board. Free books and everything he needs.

When I graduated high school I didn't bother applying to Bucknell because I knew I wouldn't get in. I'm amazed and proud of the turnaround my brother has made and feel no need to have a private blog to write about it. I imagine that living on a college campus is not the easiest thing in the world for a recovering alcoholic, but I have no doubt he will shine.

Friday, April 03, 2009

8 years

Yesterday marked my 8 year anniversary of working at the same company. Think of all the things one can do in 8 years. One could complete two terms of presidency and ruin a country. One could serve time in prison for involuntary manslaughter (I guess, I really have no idea). One could could have 10 non-twin kids, or 80 kids if you were an octomom every time you got knocked up. For me, 8 years means 5 more days of vacation. Bringing my annual vacation time to 6 weeks 2 days. If I really wanted to I could take off from November 18th until February 17th. How bad ass would that be?

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

April Fools!

So, I'm pregnant! Worlds 2nd pregnant man.

no, no, no...

So, I got in a car accident this morning and I'm in a coma.

no, no, no

So, I quit my job to pursue a full time blogging job because I've been so steady with updating this blog once a month

I actually did get my wife this morning. She called me on her way to work to warn me about cops on the road. When I got into work I sent her an email explaining how she had called me right as I was getting into my car and that made me forget to put my seatbelt on and was pulled over and given a $132 ticket for no seatbelt. She called me screaming about 30 seconds later. Ha! fool!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

The New Dora

So, parents are outraged by the new Dora. Check her out, she's pretty slutty, huh?



Same jewelry, but look at that trashy dresspants thing! And the slutty thinned out bangs! Pretty unacceptable if you ask me. But the most unacceptable part of Dora? Her Explorer skills.

I mean, her nickname is the Explorer and she really doesn't explore shit. I went to high school with a dude named Druggie Dave. You know why that was his name? He was a druggie. Tonight I read a Dora book to my daughter and Dora found the Play Park. And the only reason she found the play park was because she had a friggen map.

You know who didn't have a map? Christopher Columbus. If the Earth were flat, he'd have been dead. And Ferdinand Magellan. He circled the Earth with no talking map in his backpack. Even my least favorite Explorer, Vasco Nunez de Balbo, who "discovered" the Pacific Ocean is a better Explorer than Dora. The guy walked a few miles, opened his eyes, saw water and became one of the most famous explorers in history. It's not all that much more than Dora, but he never had his own tv show.

On yesterday's episode of Dora the Explorer she discovered her house. Her own damn house. She went through the Spooky Forest, past the Nut Farm, and then to Dora's house. All with the help of that whiny map she checked 25 times along the way.

I don't care much about the new Dora's headband or fashion sense. But, I hope that she has learned some better exploring skills in her older, sluttier years.

Monday, March 16, 2009

So Close

Last night I had a dream that some guy was living in my attic without me knowing. One night he made the mistake of coming down to use the bathroom before I was asleep. I wrestled him to the ground until the cops came. I was naked. After the cops took him away I so excited that I would finally have something interesting to blog about. Unfortunately I do not.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Who got kicked off American Idol last night?

Have that as a post title and watch the hits!

That jasmine girl that kinda looks like a fish just got kicked off and Ryan made some creepy comments to her off mic.

I don't know who else because I'm still, unfortunately, watching it.

Either that gokey guy will win it all or that girl that has a kid (does every remaining chick have a kid?)

Is it just me or is that emo/goth d-bag the most overrated singer ever?

I am 100% CONSUMED with watching the greatest American hero looking dude do chorography.

What's this judges save shit?

Friday, February 27, 2009

heh heh. He said...

In a few weeks I'm will have been with my company for 8 years. Everyday people come up to me and ask me questions and I often know the answers off the top of my head. When they walk away I think about how odd/pathetic/cool it is that I have all of this information in my head. But what's even cooler is when I get to say things like "Scrotum" and "Vagina" in a purely business sense.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Punta Canans must be sneaky

So, we're back from vacation and not happy about it. The weather was in the 80s and sunny everyday and returning to highs of 37 is not desirable. We enjoyed a lot of relaxing by the pool and on the beach. The only interesting story of the long weekend was when someone spiked my wife's drink. Or at least that's what must have happened. It definitely was not the 12 drinks she had consumed. The night was just like every other night there... dinner, followed by me kicking her ass in scrabble, followed by the resort's boring theatric show, followed by more drinks, followed by the karaoke bar, followed by the disco. The disco is surely where someone spiked her drink. They probably had some sort of special drug that makes you dance when you never normally dance, and the drug must have had some special powers over the spikee's husband to let her drag him out on the dance floor too. At around 2:30am the dancing part of the drug started to wear off and I knew better to get her back to the room before someone, besides me, took advantage of her in this drunken sabotaged state. Within 2 seconds of entering our room she was passed out. For about 10 minutes before getting up annnd... relieving herself of the contents of her stomach as I held her hair. We then returned to bed where I was happy to stay with her in bed and protect her from further attacks until around 2pm the next afternoon.



Irish coffees hours before the incident. Definitey NOT part of the problem.


Toughing it out the next night.



Wednesday, February 18, 2009

It's just not worth it

189 - Weight on Dec 31st (after a night of drinking beer and eating wings)
49 - Days since then
45 - Total "workouts" since then
22 - times I've run
86 - miles I've run
10 - times I've lifted
13 - times I've done pushups (since Jan 15)
1489 - total pushups
1500ish - total situps
183 - today's weight
6 - pounds lost

Is all that worth 6 pounds? I don't think so. Could I have run a few more miles? yes. Could I have lifted a few more times? yes. Could I have eaten less pizza and wings and burriitos? no. Could I have drank less than a keg of beer? debatable.

I'm starting to believe this whole exercise thing is a scam. Or maybe I should just finally cut my hair to lose that last 5 pounds.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Tainted Love

Three years ago I made 12 of the most ridiculously stupid Valentines day cards for my wife. And not only did I give her all these cheesy non-traditional cards, but I gave her the utlra-cheesy, ultra-traditional "bear holding a heart" (because ofa joke on The Office maybe? I don't remember). At the time I wish I sat back and decided to giver her one every year until the year 2018 instead of all 12 at once. Because now I have nothing. I've had nothing for the past two years either.

Next Thursday we're going to Punta Cana, so we agreed to get each other something small vacation related for V-Day. So, I'm thinking I'll get her sand in my bathing suit. Or maybe sunburn can be bottled? I know the mosquitos there have malaria, so I wonder if I could get her one of those? I'm open to other romantic suggestions.

Friday, January 30, 2009

My first homebrew

As I wrote a few weeks ago I started to brew my own beer. It was a lager that is suggested to sit in the bottle for 12 weeks before drinking. Obviously, 1 week is long enough for me. I opened it with the fear of God in me, honestly and completely expecting it to shoot up to the ceiling. But, it sounded and acted like a normal beer. The extra 11 week definitely will help in the clarity:




But, holy shit, it's actual good. Really good. I'm so excited. So excited I'm brewing anohter batch. Right now. It's almost 11pm and I've got about another hour and a half. uggh.. Good thing I have some beer to drink..

Monday, January 26, 2009

The Blogojevich

About a month or so ago I made the decision to not get a haircut. I've had the same haircut for the past 12 years. A size 2 or 3 razor thingy on the sides and back. Kinda short in the front with a "push-up ceaser". Here's a collage I made of my hair as well as some other awesome things.



I decided it was time for a change. To what you ask? I made no plans. I was just going to let it grow and see what happens. Maybe I'd end up looking cool like one of the guys in Flight of the Concords. Maybe I'd get sick of it and go back. But, so far I'm sticking it out. It's getting to the point where I have to start doing something different with it and right now I think my only choice is to emulate my favorite corrupt politician.




I know I still have a few more months to get it to his height. I know I'll never achieve his greatness, but I'm going for it. I'm not giving it up for bleeping nothing. I'm not going to do it.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Change

After 8 long years this country is seeing a change like no other. After 8 long years I have changed my underwear and socks. I can't imagine a bigger change than that occurring anywhere today.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Is it too early?

So, I'm amazed and glad that everyone survived that plane crash, but the list of heroes seems to grow by the minute. The pilot, the people holding babies, the people pulling others out of the water, the ferry taxis, the father and son, etc..

I want to hear the stories about the guy who shit his pants then punched an old lady as he tried to get out the door.... but then refused to step out on the wing because I ain't going in that cold ass water. Because that would be me. Right after I rescued 3 babies and a dolphin. Of course.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Vista must be broken

If it's such a beautiful, sunny day outside...




why is my computer showing me this ridiculous temperature?

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

An update!

I screwed up some stuff pretty good at work today, so I've been on a call since 6pm. I'm at a lull now so I figured I'd update this.

Based on what I've been up to, it seems I'm rich with nothing good to do with my time. Since I last wrote I bought dining room furniture, a 46 inch tv with stand, a tv stand for the basement tv, I booked a vacation to punta cana in February, and I started making my own beer.



Which was a total disaster when it boiled over the top.



Hopefully it tastes ok in the end. I'll find out in 12 friggen weeks when it's ready. I don't think I can wait that long.