Back to the Future

May 29, 2008

I’m guessing that .2% of my faithful readers are interested in sports – so this post is a little self-indulgent. However, as a fair-weather fan of the Chicago Bulls, I was perplexed and embarrassed by their decision to hire former coach, Doug Collins, to right the ship in the Windy City. Collins, who has been out of the league for 6 years, coached the Bulls for 3 years in the late 1980s – a roster that couldn’t win under Dougie, but won 3 straight for Phil Jackson immediately after Collins got fired.

Doug Collins Scares Me

Last year, the Bulls grossly underachieved – finishing 33-49. Things were looking up when they appeared to be the front-runner for the Mike Dantoni sweepstakes, but he took the money and his revolutionary coaching style to the Knicks. Again, casual fans like me were excited when the Bulls won the NBA Draft Lottery, lucking into the #1 pick, despite having a 1.7% chance. However, now that we’ve landed ourselves a notoriously over-matched game coach AND a person who hasn’t coached a single game in over half a decade…33 wins might be something we’ll need to get used to.

The other thing that has me discouraged about this whole thing…John Paxson.  As a scrawny white kid growing up in the Midwest, I had aspirations of playing pro basketball someday.  By junior high, I knew I wouldn’t be the next MJ, Magic, Isaiah, or Drexler…but I had a shot at being the next Paxson.  The beauty of JP’s game is that he made the smart play when it mattered.  He couldn’t jump or beat anyone off the dribble, but he could find himself at the right place at the right time and nail open shots

My image of Pax is starting to erode with every bonehead move he makes as the Bulls’ general manager.  Bad draft choices (Tyrus Thomas, Joakim Noah)…poor coaching hires (Scott Skiles, Collins TBD)…lame free agent signings (Ben Wallace)…perhaps Paxson should get back to what he’s best at and start signing over-achieving under-hyped spot-up shooters who come through in the clutch.  At least it would have a familiar ring to it.


Now the Feast and Celebration

May 28, 2008


Originally uploaded by Erik U.

Earlier today I joined several hundred of my closest friends at the Grand Opening of the West Des Moines Chipotle Restaurant. We were all treated to free burritos, chips & guac, and drinks. We waited in line for nearly an hour, but it was well worth the wait. In the words of little orphan Annie, “I think I’m gonna like it here!”.

The OTHER Trinity

May 27, 2008

In Confirmation class, I teach young people that the Apostles Creed is a statement of our faith in the Holy Trinity – God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. (Hopefully this isn’t a foreign concept to most of my readers.)

Though I might be walking the thin line of blasphemy, I am here to profess my faith in another triune deity – the Trifecta of Mexican Grill Restaurants…namely, Panchero’s, Qdoba, and Chipotle. If you’ve not visited any of these establishments, I’ll clue you in. It’s like a Mexican Quizno’s…only in this analogy, Taco Bell can be compared to two slices of white bread and a slice of bologna. These places all function as a variation-on-a-theme; burritos, quesadillas, soft-shell tacos, etc. Each one offers slightly different ways of preparing their meats / salsas / tortillas, but they’re all pretty much the same.

My allegiance tends to shift between Panchero’s and Qdoba, mainly because they’re the closest to where I live and work. However, I have friends and family in larger cities that all seem to prefer Chipotle. The problem is, there is no such restaurant in the entire state of Iowa.

But on May 30, all that will change!

Chipotle is coming to Valley West Mall this Friday, and I couldn’t be more thrilled. Not only is Chipotle coming to Iowa…it’s located less than 1 mile from my house!!! Needless to say, I’ll be dining there for lunch (and possibly supper) the day it opens. In fact, any faithful godsnowhere readers who show up at 11:00 on 5/30 gets lunch on me.

Chipotle Burrito

Backyard Damage

May 26, 2008

Though it’s nothing compared to what happened in Parkersburg, we did have a little storm damage in our backyard. The kids wanted to capture it on video…so here it is:

Celebrity Jeopardy

May 25, 2008

Some funny, high-quality videos of SNL doing some “Celebrity Jeopardy” parodies, starring Will Ferrell.

As well as one of my favorite all-time Ferrell sketches.

To see how dead-on Ferrell’s impersonation is, check out this utterly laughable interview between James Lipton and Kevin Spacey. There are literally no words to describe this masterpiece…

Parkersburg Flattened

May 25, 2008

It’s been quite a week for my old stomping grounds of NE Iowa. First the Postville Raid, and now news that the town of Parkersburg has been destroyed by a large tornado. As of 10:00 PM on Sunday, at least 7 people are confirmed dead, and another 35 are hospitalized. The aerial footage of the destruction is pretty bleak. I just got off the phone with my parents, and they had no idea how bad it was…and it took place literally 15 miles from where they live. Apparently, the news station in Waterloo is so overwhelmed with the situation that they were a few hours behind in bringing their updates.

Prayers for the people of Parkersburg. There are some difficult days ahead…

Running on Empty

May 16, 2008

Anyone who knows me is aware that I like to run. The problem is, over the course of the last 3,500 days I have probably run 350 of them. This means that, despite all my talk about loving to run, I barely tithe my time to running. Somewhere, the God of the universe who knows me better than anyone, gets a kick out of this. (God also probably wonders why I tithe my time to running and not my money…to which I have no reply, other than “I’m working on it”.)

All that said, I am currently in a mini-stretch of running. My friend, JP, and I are preparing for the Dam to Dam race in a couple of weeks. In preparing for this, I find myself running a lot of different routes around the Capitol City. Almost always at the completion of a run, I wonder “how far did I run today” – which prompts me to either guess how long it was (which is almost always wrong) or get in my car and drive the route I just ran. The latter choice is becoming increasingly impractical, since I’m going to be taking out a home equity loan next month to pay for gas.

This may explain my excitement for this kickass site, which allows you to draw lines on a Google Map and calculates the distance, down to the .01 of a mile. My long national nightmare is over!

So, if you see a large albino-looking redhead clip-clopping through the streets of Des Moines, be assured that, yes, I do know how far I’m running.