Monthly Archives: November 2012

2012 OSU Football – Undefeated – A Year in Pictures

The 2012 OSU Football season wasn’t supposed to be anything special. It was the first year of the Urban Meyer who came in replacing the most accomplished OSU coach since Woody Hayes. Due to some horrible decisions, the team was on a self-imposed bowl ban (Athletic Director Gene Smith should be fired for this) so realistic expectations were to set the team up for a success in 2013 and, of course, beat Michigan.

I was lucky enough to purchase season tickets from a wonderful friend and was able to attend nearly every home game. Some highlights from the year before I link to the photos….

  • Braxton Miller was amazing. I was in awe multiple times per game. I can’t wait to see the progress he makes in the off-season  He can be a beast in 2013.
  • TBDBITL (The Best Damn Band In The Land) really stepped up their game this year under the new band director Jonathan Waters. Instead of lame tributes to John Williams, halftime became must-see events. The halftime show at the Nebraska night game is legendary (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ngjcAvg6TYg )
  • When Urban was hired, he vowed to ‘Make the Great State of Ohio Proud’…. in year one, this was a resounding success.
  • It is unfortunate that Gene Smith was so incompetent in his role as athletic director by imposing the bowl ban this year instead of on last years 6-6 team. This was the wrong choice for a lot of reasons… the first and most important is that this team didn’t feature any of the players that got OSU into the mess in the first place. They all left OSU after last year. Second, why jeopardize tomorrow for today. When you are running a $100+ million dollar organization, that line of thinking is inexcusable.
  • I don’t care how bad the Big 10 is this year, OSU deserves to be ranked #2 in the country. They went undefeated in a major conference. This team reminds me of the 2002 OSU National Championship team in that they do whatever it takes to win. Some teams just have that ability. I would have loved to see them play in a BCS game.

Anyway, my photo album is located at: 2012 OSU Football Pictures

 

Tobey Turns 7

Today is Tobey’s 7th birthday. He is the greatest companion and friend I have ever known.

Some random Tobey facts:

  • Until last year, he didn’t know what an Ohio State loss to Michigan felt like (he was depressed).  He is 5-1.
  • This year, he’s run over 350 miles with me.
  • I once bought a toy at PetPeople that was supposedly tested with Lions for durability…. within 9 minutes the toy was destroyed.
  • Another story was when I bought a toy made out of recycled fire hose (known for the toughness and durability)… Tobey and Lillian had that destroyed within 15 minutes.
  • Tobey has chased packs of deer on at least 3 different occasions…. he’s 0-3 in catching them.
  • Without Tobey, I never would have met my finance’ (she has a weimaraner and we met at the dog park.

Life Without Cable – Fall Edition

As I’ve written about before, I’ve given up Cable Television in an effort to save money and also to better use my time. As such, periodically I write about what’s passing my time without cable. Here is the Autumn 2012 list.

Running with Tobey – In the first 6 months of the year, I averaged a little above 22 miles a month. Since I’ve given up cable, I’ve been averaging a little more than 49 miles a month. As part of this, I’ve also lost about 10-15 pounds. The weight loss can’t be traced to running, but it has certainly aided it. Prior to cutting cable, the longest run I had made this year was 4 miles. Recently I’ve run 6.5 with Tobey (new PR for him) and 5.5 with both pups (New PR for Lily). Running with both pups was a major accomplishment because it’s like running without arms.

(Mark and Tobey at the 2012 CHA Dog Jog where we raised over $1200 for homeless animals in Columbus)

Netflix – Let there be no mistake, Netflix is awesome. There are so many crazy and awesome documentaries on there. Some of my newly recommended:

1. Jiro Dreams of Sushi – An amazing story of someone who dedicated their life to their craft. It is amazing to see someone who is passionate about their work and what they can accomplish. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but this lived up to the recommendation from various people (Netflix also thought I would enjoy it).

2. Dumbstruck – This documentary had everything: inspiration, crazy and more crazy! It…. was….. awesome. Whether it was the amazing success of Terry Fator or the former Ms. Mansfield (and future Mrs. Ohio) explaining what ventriloquism meant to her or the crazy chick who had a wedding for two of her puppets. Like a wonderful train-wreck, I could not stop watching.

3. Make Believe – Who knew there were so many teenagers trying to follow their dream and become professional magicians…. also, who knew they were that good (minus the Africans, they were horrible compared to everyone else). This was a great movie that followed 6 of the world’s best young magicians as they tried out for the Teen World Championship.

Ohio State University – I’m taking an intro to Java Programming at The Ohio State University (My alma mater). When I was a bright eyed 18 year old freshman, I had dreams of becoming a CIS major. Unfortunately, that faded fairly quickly in my first programming class (Turbo Pascal (whatever that is)) when I had a socially awkward graduate student as an instructor. He insisted on naming every variable either foo or bar, which confused me beyond belief. I managed to pull a ‘B-‘, but the damage had been done.

Fast forward to now. My employer sent an email that they were offering an Intro to Java course through Ohio State that would be taught onsite. I was in. It’s been a lot harder and more time consuming that I thought it would be, but it validated that I made the right choice in majoring in Business. At this point, I’ve got a passing grade wrapped up, but since it’s an introductory course, I have to pass the final in order to pass the class. The goal is to avenge the ‘B-‘ I received my freshman year and pull down a solid ‘B’. 🙂

Other things taking up my time I didn’t write about, but hope to in the future: Pandora, Whatifsports Hardball Dynasty, OSU football, getting married, Google Nexus 7.

As always, I encourage you to leave a comment with your thoughts and any documentaries or movies I should check out.

Profiles of a Weimaraner

Had an uneventful weekend but was able to take a couple close-up pictures of Tobey. Props to the Samsung Galaxy SIII.

Front

Looking Left (Stage Left)

Looking Right (Stage Right)

Minnesota Memories – Twins Edition

Recently, my parents dropped a large box of old stuff they had been saving. This ranged from congratulations cards from when I was born, to athletic accomplishments to nearly every report card I’ve ever gotten (I’ve sorted the report cards, but I’m a little scared to go through them in detail). Two of my favorite items are ticket stubs from some of my favorite Twins games that I’ve had the privilege to attend.

Game 6, 1987 World Series

The 1987 World Series was the first time the Twins had made the playoffs in my lifetime. To say it was a big deal would an injustice to understatements. The entire state was all-in. Led by a 27 year-old Kirby Puckett, this was one of the most likable teams I’ve ever cheered for (another is the 2005 OSU football team). I remember watching Gary Gaetti hit two HR’s in his first two at bats in the Division Series. I remember going to what seemed like a lot of games that year and always being amazed at Tim Laudner’s throws to second. I’m convinced you could put a can of pepsi on the first bag side of second and Laudner would have knocked it over 100% of the time. That’s the beauty of memories.

Other memories are watching Kent Hrbek hit a double during the year and my dad joking that they should put him in a wheelbarrow to run because it couldn’t be any slower. As a 8 year old, that was the funniest thing I’d ever heard out of my old man’s mouth. I also remember how Greg Gagne would crouch down like a frog before every pitch as his way to prepare for the ball. I remember mimicking this in the yard with my brother. I remember Juan Berenguer and how hard he threw. I still love playing RBI baseball from the original Nintendo and putting him in just to watch him throw 100 mph.

Anyway, I found the ticket stub. I still can’t get over how amazing my parents were that they could score World Series tickets… and then to bring their 8 year old who was crazy about baseball. Just incredible.

What I remember about the game was that I was sitting next to some St. Louis Cardinals fans, which annoyed me and I remember the game being in doubt until Don Baylor hit a HR and then Kent Hrbek hit a grand slam (note: no wheelbarrow required when you park it). I remember how amazing it was to have 55,000+ people waiving their Homer Hanky. Could you imagine a World Series ticket for $30 today. Crazy.

                1  2  3   4  5  6   7  8  9    R  H  E
                -  -  -   -  -  -   -  -  -    -  -  -
Cardinals       1  1  0   2  1  0   0  0  0    5 11  2
Twins           2  0  0   0  4  4   0  1  X   11 15  0

Saturday, October 24, 1987 1:00
Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome
Attendance: 55,293, Time of Game: 3:04

Random Game in Baltimore, 1988

Every year my mom went to Washington D.C. for some meeting or convention. I remember a few years prior to 1988 my brother got to go with her. 1988 was my turn. I’m sure she took me to some of the sights and monuments, but the only thing I remember about that trip was a trip to Baltimore to watch the Orioles, who were ironically playing the Twins. Now my mom is an absolute saint. She is absolutely brilliant in everything she does with the notable exceptions of sports and technology. For instance, last Christmas we bought her a Garmin GPS unit because she was always having to print directions and whatnot. A full year later, the Garmin is still unused in the packaging. My brother got her a smart phone and somehow she set the language to Italian so she can’t text. I wish I was making this up.

Regardless, her other shortcoming is with sports. She has always been amazing and attended countless baseball and hockey games. Most of the time, she would bring a book and then pay attention when I was up to bat, but it was always awesome having her there. So this takes us to Baltimore. I remember getting to the stadium and my mom was going to buy tickets, but she had no idea what tickets were good so she walked up to one of the ushers outside the stadium and said “What would be good tickets to buy for today’s game?” And I remember this next part clear as day, he looked at my mom and I, reached in his shirt pocket, pulled out two tickets and said “These tickets are excellent” and gave them to my mom. Sometimes People are amazing. I know I’ll always have a soft spot in my heart for Baltimore because of that one individual.

The tickets were right behind home. I remember Kent Hrbek (he’s everywhere in this blog post) hitting what I thought were two hr’s (after looking up the box score, it was only one). We left before the game was decided, but I still remember it like it was yesterday.

Ironically, Les Straker was the starting pitcher at both games.

                1  2  3   4  5  6   7  8  9  10 11    R  H  E
                -  -  -   -  -  -   -  -  -   -  -    -  -  -
Twins           0  0  0   1  0  0   0  0  2   0  0    3 11  1
Orioles         0  0  0   1  0  1   0  0  1   0  1    4  6  0

Wednesday, May 4, 1988, 7:35
Memorial Stadium
Attendance: 12,325, Time of Game: 3:28

Feel free to share any feedback or your memories in the comments.