Monthly Archives: March 2013

It’s Almost Next Year!!! Opening Day on April 1!

Opening day is nearly here! The Minnesota Twins open at 4:10pm versus the Detroit Tigers on April 1. For those who don’t follow baseball, the Twins are coming off consecutive last place finishes in the their division. In 2011 they won a grand total of 63 games and in 2012 only won 66. This year doesn’t look to be much better with Vegas putting the estimated win total at a robust 68.5 wins.

Part of the beauty of opening day is that anything can happen for one game. The Twins are facing  the odds-on favorite to win the division in the Tigers. Detroit will be pitching Justin Verlander. He’s not only the best pitcher in the league, but also won the MVP two years ago making him the best player in the league. The odds are not in the Twins favor, but like so many things in life… hope springs eternal. If Baltimore and Oakland could compete last year, anything can happen. With that said, here are a few things I’m looking forward to this year.

  • Watching Joe Mauer play
  • Listening to and watching Vin Scully, Bob Uecker and Charlie Steiner via the MLB.tv package
  • Seeing if the Twins can get any value from trading Justin Morneau or Josh Willingham at the trade deadline
  • Watching Trevor Plouffe and Aaron Hicks development (I think Plouffe is going to have another breakout year)
  • Watching Glen Perkins and Jared Burton
  • Reading the great Aaron Gleeman and Joe Posnanski (who can also be found at http://hardballtalk.nbcsports.com/)

Another one of my favorite things about baseball season is listening to the Gleeman and the Geek podcast for their annual Over/Under predictions. I thought it may be fun to jot down their predictions and join in with some of my friends. The plan is to check back at the end of the year with how everyone did. If we were in Vegas, my top picks would be the under on the Twins and Red Sox and the over on the Rays. With that said, below are the over/under predictions (Note: on the podcast, Bonnes said he was confident about 5, but I only counted 4).

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If you have anything you’re looking forward to for the upcoming MLB season or want to get in on the over/under fun please feel free to drop a note in the comments.

Life Without Cable – Early Spring Edition

It’s been almost a year since I gave up cable. In that time, I’ve saved nearly $70 a month, which brings my savings up to nearly $600. A sizable number for sure. Periodically, I write about how I’m passing the time without cable. This is the Winter/Early Spring edition.

NCAA March Madness – Name the only university who has made the sweet sixteen the last four years….? If you guessed The Ohio State University, then you got it right! This year’s tournament has been stellar for the Scarlet and Gray. I had nearly given up on this team after the horrible Wisconsin loss on February 17 (Wisc. 71, OSU 49)…. Instead of giving up after that loss, the team has gone undefeated and played their best basketball of the year. For the fourth consecutive year, I have picked OSU to win my bracket. Unlike previous years, I have absolutely no shot winning unless OSU  holds up their end of the bargain. Tip off is 7:45pm on Thursday versus Arizona on TNT. This is the first time where not having cable will affect my plans. I’ll be headed to a sports bar to watch the game.

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House of Cards – Netflix – Just an amazing show. Well written with amazing acting. Currently, I’m at episode 10 and I am all-in. This show is absolutely HBO-esque. Paying $7.99 a month for Netflix is the bargain of the year! I’d put this show on par with Mad Men and Breaking Bad.

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NCAA 2k13 – Xbox 360 – I don’t know why I’m so hooked on this game, but I can’t stop playing. I’m past the dynasty mode and now have created a player and I’m working on getting them to the hall of fame. In year two I won the NBA championship! In year 3, my player is averaging 23+ points a game. Another great NBA game by 2K sports. If only they didn’t crap the bed with their MLB game…. Again.

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Running – As I previously wrote about, I’ve really kicked running into high gear. Tobey and I are averaging over 4o miles a month and our average mile time has dropped to the low 9’s. There isn’t much I like more in life than running with Tobey.

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If you have any recommendations for life without cable or any comments, please drop a note in the comments.

Photography and Some of My Favorite Pictures – Tobey and Lillian Edition

This is the third and final post in my series of favorite photographs that I’ve taken. This post will focus exclusively on my two weimaraners, Tobey and Lillian. I’ll follow the same pattern as before where I’ll write about why I enjoy a particular photo. So…. with that said, let’s get started.

This was taken after the 2008 CHA Dog Jog (my first race ever with Tobey). This was also the day after my grandfather passed away so I was incredibly happy to have something to take my mind of grieving. The picture itself was taken outside of Nationwide Arena. I think what I like most is  how the photo captured how happy Tobey was to be around all the dogs and people.

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The next picture was taken on a trip to the Hocking Hills. We had just got up and the dogs were already anxious to explore and hunt. They immediately went to the window to see if they could catch a glimpse of the wildlife. I love how this picture captures the two wiems standing next to each other as best friends.

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The next picture was also taken in the Hocking Hills. I think this was taken on vivid mode and it really brought out the blue coat on Lillian. She is one of the most photogenic dogs I’ve ever seen and also the sweetest weimaraner in the world

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The next two pictures are close ups of Tobey running. This could be one of the cool photo sets of nearly the identical situation in each season. I only need Autumn and Spring to complete the set. I love the floppy ears as he runs.

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This picture was taken of Lillian a few Christmas’ ago. I grabbed a scarf and put it  on her. In this photo, I especially like the expression on her face and the look in her eyes.

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This picture was taken in a nearby woods. This is Tobey’s impression of ‘Where’s Waldo’. Like all great animal pictures, it usually takes about 30 pictures to capture a great one.

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This picture was taken at a nearby state park. Tobey had a great time retrieving the ball and bringing it back. What I really like about this picture is the contrast of the water. I like the pure blue in the distance and the muddy shore from all the dog activity.

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This post is getting unsurprisingly long so I plan to have a future post of additional Weimaraner pictures. In the meantime, if you have any favorite pictures or photos you’d like to share, please drop a note in the comments.

Photography and Some of My Favorite Pictures – Dog Edition

I previously posted some of my favorite photographs that I’ve taken. I’m extremely passionate about dogs so a disproportionate amount of my pictures involve them. For this post, I’m going to include some of my favorites. I hope to have another post in the future with my favorite pictures of my weimaraners (Tobey and Lillian).

The first picture was taken at the CHA Dog Jog. I had hurt my ankle so I couldn’t participate in the race so I took my camera. This picture is of my co-workers son Ben and their dog Tucker. I like how this picture captures the dog mimicking the human and makes us wonder what are they looking at that is so fascinating?

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The second picture is of my future father-in-law and my puppy Lillian running the 2012 CHA Dog Jog. This was taken at COSI on the Scioto River. I’m not sure if this picture was taken by me or my finance’, but it turned out awesome. I like how the subjects are perfectly centered and the lighting is perfect.

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The next two pictures were taken in New Orleans on Royal street. The street performers had a big crowd and put on a great show, but the puppy found a warm soft spot and was out cold.

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The next picture was also taken in New Orleans. I was on my own checking out Bourbon and Royal Street and I came upon two people who I think were homeless. They were almost dragging the puppy because it was so tired. Eventually, one of them picked up the dog and threw it on his shoulder like a backpack. The situation broke my heart but I came away with a picture that I’m really proud of.

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The final picture is one I took in the Hocking Hills on a trip I took with my finance’ to celebrate our engagement. We were on a hike and we stopped to let the dogs play. I was following behind and I took this shot of her and Lillian resting. I really like the vibrant colors and how serene and peaceful they look.

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If you have any pictures you love or want to weigh in on any of mine, please drop a note in the comments section.

Photography and Some of My Favorite Pictures

Let me start out by saying that I really like taking taking pictures. I like having visual memories and I like the idea of being able to develop prints I’ve taken that would be cool in a frame or hung on a wall. My wonderful fiance’ even went as far to buy me a self-help book on digital photography. I haven’t been as studious as I would like, but I think I have made improvements. With that said, below are some of my favorite pictures that I’ve taken. For this post, I’m not going to include any dogs, as that will be a separate post in the future.

The first picture was taken in Aruba. I was lucky enough to get the lizard looking directly at me. I love the look on his face…. almost like he’s smirking at the camera.

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This picture was taken in New Orleans. Ironically, we were there for a pharmaceutical clinical meeting. On this picture, I like the timeless feel. When I look at it, this could be from 1955 or 2012. I also like the connection to why we were in New Orleans.

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I think this could be my favorite picture (non-family) that I’ve ever taken. This was again in Aruba on Flamingo Beach. The picture captures the flamingo in motion and captures the pure blue of the water. I have this as the background on my Nexus 10 and I’ve noticed that the water is so clear that there are at least 2 or 3 fish that are captured in this picture.

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This picture was also taken in New Orleans. It was shot in black and white. This was a really fun street performance. I wasn’t sure when the next time I’d get to see someone playing the washboard. Stay tuned for more from this group in the favorite dog picture post.

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If you have any pictures you love or want to weigh in on any of mine, feel free to drop a note in the comments section.