Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Benton County Fair

The other major summer event in Corvallis (along with da Vinci Days) is the Benton County Fair and Rodeo. It features carnival rides, rodeo and tractor pull competitions and live country music.

All this takes place pretty much in our backyard.

My friend Tracy and her daughter Kayla are heavily involved in this event, and they arranged for me to help take entries in the food competition (pies, canned food, cakes, etc.) for a couple of hours on Sunday and Monday. It was enough to get me a free pass.

I was struck by the contrast between the two events. da Vinci Days had a lot of science displays and events (kinetic races, remote control airplanes, robot derby, etc.) and left leaning political booths (Basic Rights Oregon, and a variety of environmental organizations), and even a skeptics booth for kids in the family area. The fair, on the other hand, had an anti-evolution booth and evangelical church groups.

I like da Vinci Days best.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Happy Birthday Mama!

Today is my Mama's birthday.

She's 71.

Happy Birthday Mama!

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Nifty Faucet Gizmo

I'm taking the Corvallis Energy Challenge.

They inspect your home and tell you what you need to do to make it more energy efficient. Then they give you cash incentives if you actually do them. Basically you spend thousands of dollars on improvements, they pay you back hundreds of dollars in incentives, and you save dozens of dollars in energy costs. It all works out somehow.

The inspector came over on Wednesday and gave me a list of things I need to do. Among a dozen or so small things (don't leave your phone charger plugged in when your phone's not charging, etc.), there were a couple of big ticket items:

Seal and Insulate the ducts
Insulate the floor
Insulate the walls
Install high efficiency furnace

But even if I don't do any of these things, I get to keep this nifty faucet gizmo:

Wednesday, July 23, 2008


Pictures of some critters in and around my house.

A slug.

A Butterfly.
It's *really* hard to take a picture of a butterfly.

A gazillion and a half baby spiders.
I didn't actually count them.

These two spiders do an interpretive dance to Billy Holiday.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Juggling Videos

Some videos I took Monday night at the juggling club:

Dave and Crizzly passing eight clubs:

From Crizzly's POV (it was right side up on my camera, but I can't figure out how to turn right here):

From underneath:

Saturday, July 19, 2008

da Vinci Days

This weekend was da Vinci Days in Corvallis; Good Music, Good Art, Good Science, Good times.

Some pictures from the Kinetics races:

Sidewalk chalk art:

Robot Derby:

Me Juggling:

Sports Weekend

The big sports news of the weekend is, of course, the big championship game. Will Matt D'Orazio, after starting the season as the backup, bring the Foster Trophy home? (Again!). Will the city of Philadelphia get its first professional sports championship in 25 years, or will San Jose defend their title?

In local news, I watched the the Corvallis Knights, of the West Coast Collegiate Baseball League play the Kitsap BlueJackets yesterday. The Knights lost 4 to 2, but were able to rebound and shutout the BlueJackets in today's game. The Knights remain at the top of the WCBL standings with a 20-9 record.

Corvallis also has a Women's Football team: The Corvallis Pride. Their season ended three weekends ago when they lost to the Seattle Majestics in the first round of the playoffs. I took these pictures from their May 10 game against Seattle (which they also lost).

The IWFL will play their championship game next Saturday.

The most important sports in Corvallis are the OSU teams, of which I managed to catch a handful of softball games. I hope to catch a Beavers football game this season and maybe a couple of basketball games (Michelle Obama's brother is their new coach!)

Saturday, July 12, 2008

What I did on the Fourth of July

On the Fourth of July weekend I took the train up to Seattle to visit Chris and family (Andy and Jung-Eun) and friends (Jenni and Matt).

I stayed at Chris' tony new digs on Capitol Hill where we all got together to watch fireworks from the deck.