Friday, December 13, 2019

And a Happy Thanksgiving Was Had by All

Two weeks ago, I was up visiting my family for Thanksgiving.

Actually, the fun started on Wednesday on my way up them.  I stopped in Fresno as I often do to visit my friends Donald and Heather.  I got an added bonus this year since Donald’s sister and brother-in-law – who are also my friends – Stephen and Natalie, were also in town, so I got to see them.  I haven’t seen them in several years, so it was nice to catch up with all of them.  It was too short, as always, but that’s a common complaint.

That meant I got to Santa Rosa late on Wednesday, but it was worth it.

Thursday, my brother and his family hosted us for Thanksgiving, as always.  However, this year was special since we got to have Thanksgiving in their new home.  I hadn’t seen it at all yet, so I was thrilled to get to finally see it.  It looks wonderful, and they are absolutely loving it.  If they had to go through the fire, this was a wonderful result.  No, everything isn’t completely resolved yet, but they are much happier being home again.

Unfortunately, I was sick for much of the visit.  I was congested, and it has turned into a cough that hasn’t completely gone away even now.  But Thursday night, my saliva glands decided to get blocked.  They really got swollen, and it was painful to eat, so I went to see a doctor on Friday.  She gave me some advice and some anti-biotics.  Waiting for those anti-biotics was the long part, unfortunately.  But I am mostly feeling better now.

I did leave Sunday, which I typically don’t like to do.  That is always the worst day to drive around Thanksgiving.  But I am trying to save vacation for next year, and I needed to be back for fiscal year end at work on Monday.  I got up and left right away Sunday morning – I was on the road before 8 AM.  I didn’t stop for lunch, and I stopped at a very little used place for gas.  I paid extra because of it, but it was worth not having to wait.  Other than that, I just drove.  I got home mid-afternoon, which was a huge blessing to get ready to go back to work the next day.  And I didn’t have to deal with too much slow traffic, either.  I will definitely keep this in mind for the next couple of years, when I will unfortunately be doing the same thing due to work.  After that, I should be able to take Monday off again.

Thursday, November 14, 2019

The Dentist

When I was talking about the fires last week, I realized I had never posted anything about going to the dentist.  Yes, I know for most people that isn’t big news, but I hadn’t been to the dentist for over 20 years.  Yeah, I know.  I knew I had one tooth at least that was bugging me, so once my benefits kicked in at my new job, I made an appointment.  I went to one that had been recommended to me a few years ago, and is very close to my condo.  I can easily make it home after an appointment, which worked out well the day of the fire.

As I expected, I had cavities.  Turned out I had roughly a dozen.  Wasn’t expecting quite that many, although most of them are fairly small.  I do have deep indentations in my teeth normally, so this doesn’t surprise me that much.  And, considering how long it has been, that doesn’t surprise me.

No, they didn’t do all those fillings all at once.  Instead, they filled them in four different appointments.  No, it wasn’t fun, but it wasn’t horrible either.

The appointment back in October was my last one to get fillings.  One of the teeth they filled them is extremely sensitive to cold, even with using toothpaste that should be be helping with that.  But the bite feels good as does everything else.  Overall, I am happy, and I’ve had teeth sensitive to cold in the past, so this isn’t a new development.

And yes, I have my six month check up appointment already scheduled.  I don’t intend to go so long between visits again.

Monday, November 04, 2019


I spent about a week of my life at the end of October worried about fires.

It started with me.  On a Thursday, I had a dentist appointment.  Fortunately, it was by my place, because as I was driving to the appointment, I saw the smoke.  When I was done, I went home to find out the fire was a couple of miles away.  I decided to pack up and go stay with friends across town.  Turns out, I was under mandatory evacuation.  Not sure when that went into effect, but good thing I packed up and made plans.  Actually, I’m not sure I could have gotten home if I’d worked until my normal quitting time.

While some homes in the area were burned, it was a small number, and the fire never got any closer to my place.  The evacuation was lifted by the next night, although I did stay away one more night, going home on Saturday.

And it was Saturday that my family started packing up to evacuate from their homes due to a fire in northern California.  They all went to stay with my uncle and aunt a few hours away.  The evacuation was huge, so the traffic was bad, but they made it.  It was really scary with huge winds up there, but God and the firefighters keep the fire from burning too many structures again.  It could have been bad, but it wasn’t.

My brother has just moved into his new home after the fires two years ago burned his house down, so this was extra hard on everyone.  But again, God protected them and so many others.

So that was the end of my October.  Hopefully November is quieter.

Monday, September 30, 2019

Ascot Hills 5K

This Saturday, I did something I rarely do – a 5K.  Just a plain old regular 5K.

I signed up because a friend from work has been trying to get me to do a race with him, and this one was on a Saturday.  I figured that was a good thing.  Unfortunately, it was a ways away, and I had to wake up super early on a Saturday to go and do it.  Even worse, a friend from high school was in town last minute.  Fortunately, I got to see him Friday night because the friend I was going to do the race with flaked on me.

The race itself was in downtown LA at a park I had no idea existed.  Then again, I haven’t spent that much time in downtown LA, so that isn’t a surprise.  They call it a hill challenge, and they are right.  There are two hills in the 5K, and even though I regularly do run hills around my complex, these hills still got to me.  I had to walked parts of the uphill parts.

I finished in 38 minutes, which was a pretty good time as far as I was concerned.  I would have been faster if I had run the entire thing, of course, but given the hills, I’m very happy with that time.

There were so nice views of the city along the way.

I’m sure I would have enjoyed the run more had I not been so upset over my friend flaking on me.  But that kind of took the enjoyment out of it for me.

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Men’s Retreat 2019

This past weekend was men’s retreat with my church, and I went again.  That’s the one advantage of the mud run I used to do that weekend going out of business, I guess.  It was at the same location as last year, a camp associated with my church’s denomination.

The location is great, up on a mountain in the woods.  The camp itself isn’t too big, which is nice because you can walk everywhere you need to go in a couple of minutes.  We got one of the nice, newer cabins again this year, which include plenty of outlets.  Granted, after the first night, I didn’t have to charge my phone.  I got no reception up there, so I was only using it to read, and I kept it in airplane mode.  You really don’t use much battery when you do that.

I rode up on Friday afternoon with my pastor.  It was nice getting to talk to him for a few hours.  Of course, he headed out Saturday night so he could preach Sunday morning.  I rode back with a guy I’d met up there.  He attends second service, so I rarely see him, but it was nice to get to know him better.

We played some disc golf, and volleyball.  One team from my church won the trivia contest.  My team didn’t.  I tried my hand at the poker tournament, but didn’t make it too far.  At least I wasn’t the first one out.

The speaker was okay.  He told some good stories, but the Bible wasn’t a big part of his talks.  And he seemed to wander.  Last year’s speaker wasn’t the best either, so I guess I need to adjust my expectations accordingly.  Or maybe I’ve just spent too many years around good preaching.

Overall, I’m glad I went.  I could have used a few more days up there to truly unwind.

Thursday, September 12, 2019

Bubble Run 2019

Wow, it’s been almost a month since I updated this blog hasn’t it?  Of course, there hasn’t been too much of excitement going on.  Work, church, ultimate Frisbee.  Well, except for this last Saturday.

This last Saturday, I did The Bubble Run for the first time.  It was down at Angel Stadium in Anaheim.  The run was in the parking lot and the stadium itself.  It was supposed to be a 5K, but I really have no way of knowing if it was or not.

And the bubble part of the name?  They had five bubble machines set up along the course for us to run through.  What I didn’t realize was that the bubbles would leave colored patches on our shirts, but that washed off as soon as I put it in my washing machine.  Still, my legs were colored, which I found amusing when I got home.

Honestly, the bubbles were a bit underwhelming.  It was fun and different, but I don’t know that I’d go out of my way to do it again.

However, running through the stadium was a lot of fun.  We did that twice, once on the ground level running the outside of the field (not the part the players play on).  And then again inside the stadium itself past the concessions.

I did it with my friend Rory.  He seems hooked on this kind of run now.  Sadly, he’s moving away in a week, so it will be harder to do another run like this with him.

We got a good deal, where we just had to pay for insurance and a small donation to get in.  That definitely helped make it worth it.

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Summer League Tournament

This past Saturday was the tournament that ends my summer league ultimate Frisbee league.  That’s right, you can hear me stop whining about summer league now.

Actually, I had a pretty good time, much better than I was expecting.  We only had nine people show up, two of whom were subs.  Par for the course, right?  Since we were in last place, started out playing the second place team (there were seven total teams so the first place team wasn’t involved in the first round).  We actually came very close to winning that game after going on a five point run to take the lead 9-5.  Unfortunately, we wound up losing 11-13.

That sent us to the second game in the consolation brackets.  And we actually won that second game!  The final score was 13-7 or something like that.  It felt so good.  This means we also finished above seventh place, so better than we did going into the tournament.  Not too hard when you are in last.

This also meant we got a third game, and by that point the heat and lack of subs got the better of us.  We lost that game something like 5-13.

The tournament this year was in Corona, something like an hour and a half from me.  Other than having to wake up horribly early to get there on time, it wasn’t too bad.  It certainly helped that the tournament was pushed back an hour so I didn’t have to leave town until 7 instead of 6.  Yikes!  It also helped that I carpooled with some friends who were playing on other teams.  It made the drive go much more quickly.  Surprisingly, traffic was bad either direction.

Wednesday, August 07, 2019

Final Two Regular Summer League Games

We’ve played the final two games of summer league regular season.  And guess what!  Yep, we lost them both.

Last Wednesday’s game was close.  We finished 10-15, but we made grounds in catching up in the second half.

Last night’s game wasn’t close at all.  It was 3-15.  It was 1-8 at half.  We just couldn’t seem to get much going, and they were on fire.  I expected to lose, but not quite this blood bath.  Not only are we the worst team in the league, but they are the first place team.  I would have been nice to beat them, but I was hoping for a close game.  Oh well.

What’s worse is my performance in the last two points.  I had been pretty much irrelevant in the game until that point, but my guy scored on my for the next to last point and then I threw a turn on the last point.  But, when your team loses that badly, it really is a team effort.

On the plus side, we actually had double digits show up.  Yep, there were 10 of us – a season high.

This Saturday is the tournament.  Honestly, I can’t wait to get it over with and put this season behind me.  Unfortunately, it’s going to be a drive to get down there, but they’ve rolled back the starting time to 8:45.  Still have to leave town by 7, but that’s an hour later than I was thinking and it sounds manageable.

Monday, July 29, 2019

Bowling for the Zoo

I got to go bowling Saturday night!

The LA Zoo was having some kind of fundraiser.  I’m not completely sure what it was raising funds for since it wasn’t Bowling for Rhinos this time, but it didn’t matter to me too much.  Angelique was getting the same group together that had bowled together last year for Bowling for Rhinos at the last minute and asked me if I wanted to join.  Naturally, I said yes.

This was the first time I’d bowled in over a year, and it was nice to get to use my bowling ball and shoes again.

There were five of us bowling on two lanes.  I was on the lane with two people, which meant we got a lot of games in, especially since the three on the other lane were taking things a little slower.

We bowled for an hour and a half, and we got four games in on my lane.  My scores were 115, 122, 150, and 139.  What was amazing was I had more strikes in that final game than any of the other games.  Obviously, spares are important for high scores as well if you aren’t going to strike.

Anyway, it was fun to hang out with everyone.  And great to be bowling again.

Things weren’t as crowded as they were for the Bowling for Rhinos event.  I get why that is disappointing from a fundraising point of view, I was thankful because last time it was just too crowded and it was hard to move when you weren’t at your alley, which was no fun at all.

Friday, July 26, 2019

Another Week, Another Summer League Game

There are only so many ways to say we lost, so titling my blog posts is becoming hard.  But yes, we lost again.

Our game this week was Wednesday night.  Fortunately, it was close, so I didn’t have to fight traffic.  We had 9 people show up, a 10th showed up for the last point – that’s as soon as he could get there after working late.

We started out behind, down 4-8 at half, and that was after scoring a couple in a row at the end.  We came back in the second half.  While the final score was 11-15, we tied it up, and we were at 11-12 before they went on the final run to win.

What is frustrating is this is the one team we have beat all season.  On the other hand, when we beat them, they only had 8 people show up to our 9.

And they were fast.  I played the fewest points I had been all season because there was only one person I had a hope of staying with on defense.  I played most offensive points, and I would play on defense in he was on the field.  I got scored on twice in the first half.  Fortunately, I didn’t in the second half because I was playing fewer points.  I didn’t have any turn overs on offense, and I might have helped force a turn on defense in the second half.  Definitely was key in getting a reset on one of the points we scored in the second half, which made me happy.

Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Meeting JMS

Last night, I had the chance of a lifetime.

I have been a fan of the TV show Babylon 5 since I was introduced to it by a couple of friends in college.  I discovered earlier this year that J. Michael Straczynski (dubbed JMS by us fans), the show’s creator, was releasing an autobiography.  Naturally, I started watching to see if he was doing any signings.

I’m not sure how I discovered he was doing one signing in the Los Angeles area since he has mainly been promoting his convention appearances.  But there was indeed one signing at Book Soup down in West Hollywood last night.  Naturally, as soon as I found out about it, I decided I was going to go.

I’d never been to the bookstore before, and I’m sure I would have enjoyed it had I taken a little more time to explore.  However, I didn’t have that much time before the signing started by the time I got down there and parked.  It really doesn’t have much parking, and it is in a busy neighborhood, so that was trickier than I thought it would be.

But it was well worth it.  There wasn’t as much of a crowd as I feared there would be, but I’m not sure the shop would have survived if there had been a giant crowd.  JMS was funny, yet the bits he teased from his personal life are heartbreaking.  I suspect that I’m going to find the book heartbreaking reading.

I didn’t have long to chat with him since there were people waiting in line behind me waiting to get things signed, but I was able to thank him for the countless friends I have made while watching the show.  And I’m not talking about characters (although I love them), but the friends I have watched the show with who have become some of my closest friends.  Yes, I got the booked signed as well as the DVD booklet for season 4 of Babylon 5.  I don’t think I came across as a blathering fan.  At least I hope I didn’t.

Friday, July 19, 2019

Lost Again

Wednesday was my summer league ultimate Frisbee game this week.  Yep, we lost again.  The final score was 10-15.  The cool thing is, this is the team we played the first week of the summer, and we did better.  That was a very good feeling.

We had 8 guys show up.  Seriously, why can’t we get more guys to show up at games?  That would make a huge difference for us.

I had a few drops, but the discs were rising as I tried to get them, so they were hard catches.  I also had some successful catches and throws, so I felt good about that.

Thursday, July 18, 2019

Another Mud Run Canceled

I was supposed to have another mud run this last weekend.  Once again, it was canceled on me.

What made this one even worse was that it was canceled on me at the last minute.  As in, some of the earlier waves had already run, and I had arrived at the location (an hour and a half away) before they canceled it.

I’d arrived over in San Bernardino plenty early, but then I got stuck in traffic for the final mile and a half.  After going maybe a tenth of a mile, I learned that the parking and the overflow parking was all full, so I parked in a lot nearby and started hoofing it toward the venue.  That’s when I started hearing from people that they had closed the mud run.  I decided it wasn’t worth walking all the way up there to find out officially.  When I was almost back to my car, I heard someone using a bullhorn to call it out behind me.  And then later, I got e-mail confirmation.

I still haven’t heard officially why it was canceled.  They said the heat, but they planned to have Sunday’s race go on as scheduled, and it was going to be just as hot.  They were going to let people race in whatever wave, but that would just create nightmares at the obstacles.  Needless to say, I didn’t go back.  Anyway, they also warned us about the heat in e-mails this week, so clearly it wasn’t a surprise.  I suspect something must have happened that caused them to close it, but I don’t know what.

Fortunately, it wasn’t a wasted drive.  I had planned to meet a friend for lunch, and she was free two hours early, so we meet up earlier than originally planned.  We wound up talking for 4 hours, so the drive time was definitely well worth it.

Friday, July 12, 2019

Losses Continue

This last Monday was my latest summer league ultimate Frisbee game.  And it was another loss.

We actually had 10 people show up, although two of them were subs and not regular members of our team.  Still, it was a welcome change from the week before to not have to play every single point. 

The other team had several friends of mine out it, so it was nice to see them.  But it wasn’t at all a close game.

We were tied at 1-1, I think, but we weren’t close much after that.  We finished at 7-15.  They threw zone at us early, and we just couldn’t counter it.

I did feel like I was doing well in the game.  I can’t remember any turn overs I was involved in period.  And yes, I was thrown to several times.

Our game finished so fast, that I hung out afterwards.  Threw the disc around a bit and chatted with friends.  Watched the final point of the final game.  Then I went out to the bar afterwards, where I talked until late.  I should have gone to bed much earlier than I did, but that’s the story of my life these days, it seems.

Thursday, July 11, 2019

Parents in Town for the 4th

My parents came to town for the 4th of July.  I had to work on Friday (no vacation time since I’ve started a new job), but they knew this before they came down.  They still figured this gave us more time together than if they came for a regular weekend.

We stayed fairly close to home for most of the visit.  Played lots of games, including a new one that I won all but one game of.  I love that game!

We did go out to see the fireworks on Thursday night, or at least try to.  I was scared of how crowded I figured things would be at the mall, so I took us to a park a little ways away.  Unfortunately, the fireworks were so low that the trees hid most of them.  However, we did get to enjoy some illegal fireworks that were much closer and very impressive.

Sunday, we headed down to the other end of Los Angeles to a baby shower for some family friends from home.  We were the only friends at the friends and family shower, but that was fine because it gave us lots of time to catch up with everyone who was there.  Don’t get to spend enough time with them all.

They stayed with me again, which is working well.  It is convenient that we are all in the same place, although I would usually spend some time with them in their trailer.  And, it’s cheaper for them, obviously.  An added benefit of not having a roommate.  Plus is gives me motivation to clean the place occasionally.

Monday, they went home while I was at work.  It was a great visit.

Tuesday, July 02, 2019

Summer League Game 4

You never quite know how many people are going to show up the week of the 4th of July.  There are holiday plays plus there’s a big ultimate tournament in Seattle every year.  (Or at least there used to be.  I haven’t heard anything about it this year.  Not that I ever tried to go.)

Last night, we had…7.  And we play with 7 on the field.  You can see what that means – lots of playing time.  We were on the field the entire time.

I was actually very impressed with how we did considering we were savage.  We took half at 8-6.  Sadly, the fact that they had 3 subs and we didn’t have any wore on us in the second half and we lost.  I thought the score was 10-15 at the end, but it got officially reported at 12-15.  I’ll take it!  Especially since that three point loss is equal to the three extra people they had.  Imagine if they had been savage as well.

I score one of our goals, too!  They were poaching like crazy, and I was able to take advantage of that at one point to score.  Unfortunately, I made up for it by dropping a pull (a bad turnover) and dropping another couple of throws.  Plus a few throws to me were too low or just out of reach and I missed them, too.  Still, I scored a goal!  I’m going to focus on that.

Friday, June 21, 2019

And a Win!

Also known as Summer League Game 3

Yes, that's right, we won last night.  It was something like 15-9, too.  We were ahead the entire game, although they did score a couple of points in a row when we reached 13 to make the game last longer than it should have.  And that first point after 13 lasted a long time.  Like at least 10 minutes.  There were so many turns.  I'm glad I wasn't on the field for that one.

We had 9 guys show up this week again, but they only had 8, which certainly helped us out a lot.  We also had two guys who hadn't been able to make it so far, which was nice.  But I do think that extra guy made a lot of the difference.

On a personal note, I had a mixed bag.  I caught two discs and I dropped two discs.  There was also one that was thrown to me where the disc sailed over the head, but fortunately a team mate was there to catch it.  One of those drops was low and to my side.  It did bounce off my hand, but it was a very awkward throw for me to catch.  The other one was most definitely my fault.  I committed the classic mistake of looking for where I was going to throw the disc before I caught it.  Just before I dropped it, I realized what I was doing, too, but there was no time to watch the disc until I caught it.  Fortunately, we got a turn and I was able to successfully catch the disc and pass it on later in that very point.

Monday, June 17, 2019

Irvine Lake Mud Run 2019

Or the mud run that wasn’t.

The Irvine Lake Mud Run holds a special place in my heart.  It was the first mud run I did back in April of 2010.  While I haven’t done it every year, I’ve done it at least 10 times because I did it multiple times some years, and I think I only missed one year.  The last couple of years, they’ve only done it once, and the numbers have been dropping, so I was afraid the day would come when they would discontinue it.

Never the less, when they announced the mud run for this year, I signed up at the cheapest discounted rate – back in July of last year.  That race was supposed to take place this last Saturday.  I was still getting promo e-mails like I usually do from them; in fact, I got one over Memorial Day weekend.

So you can imagine my shock when I got an e-mail two weeks ago, a week and a half before the event, saying they weren’t going to be able to put on the mud run this year and it was postponed until March of 2020.  That’s right, another 9 months away.  My registration was good for the new date or I could have my registration switched to someone else.

Naturally, I wasn’t happy about that since I had been planning some other things for that day since I would be down in Orange County any way.  However, I’ve managed to work things out so I can do those activities on other days, and I was able to get together with some friends on Saturday I would have had to pass on otherwise.

But what really makes me mad is that I am going to have to fight them for a refund.  The weekend they have rescheduled for I have other plans for already, so I can’t do this run.  They didn’t offer a refund, so I am going to have to fight them for it, and I will.  It’s not a lot of money, but it is the principle.

What makes me even sadder is I bet this is the end of this particular mud run.  No one is very happy with them right now, and I doubt others are going to sign up after this stunt.  It was truly a very fun event, and I’m sad that last year was my last time doing this run.  Even if they do come back from this, it is going to be hard to trust them and sign up again.

Friday, June 14, 2019

Summer League Game 2

We had our second summer league ultimate Frisbee game Wednesday night.  It was the same result, only better.  What do I mean?  We lost, but we lost 13-15, which is just over double our score from last week.  We had 9 guys show up instead of the 8 we had last week, too.

The one thing that is frustrating is that we were up almost the entire game.  We took half at 8-6.  Then they came back and tied it up.  We aren’t completely sure what the score was at that point, but it was either 13’s or 12’s.  We went with 12’s.  As you can see, they score 3 points to our 1 after that.

I’m sure the fact that they had more subs helped them.  Especially since it meant I was out there on D.  I hope we get a few more subs so I can play more offense than defense.

However, I’m not complaining about getting more playing time.  I’m getting more than I’m used to, and I’m definitely not complaining about that.

I didn’t have any drops or throwaways last night, although one throw was close.  There was one disc thrown to me that fell short.  I could have run to it, but I thought it was going to make it to me, and then I lost it in the lights.  By the time I saw it was going to be short, I couldn’t get there.  If I’d been running harder toward it, I might have been able to get there, so that is frustrating.

We’ve been playing at the fields where Summer League was played for years.  (Don’t remember if I mentioned this last week.)  It was nice to be there for a nostalgia point of view.  And it is really nice to be there since it is a shorter drive than where the majority of our games are these days.  However, the gophers have taken over the field.  It’s why we stopped playing there.  We won’t be there anymore this summer, and I won’t miss the gophers at all.

Thursday, June 13, 2019

Camp Pendleton Mud Run 2019


I have now done the Camp Pendleton Mud Run 10 times.  I really find that hard to believe.  It doesn’t seem possible that it has been 10 years since I started doing mud runs.  But the number of mud run related shirts in my closet certainly don’t lie.

I had hoped to get some friends to join me this year, but that didn’t come together, so once again it was just me.  My parents were almost in the area, but their plans changed again as well.  So it was just me driving down and back and doing the mud run.  Not that I’m completely upset because I got over half of an audio book listened to, finishing it up just before I got home.

As usual, I spent Friday night in the area.  Hopefully the Motel 6 I was at this year gets their hot water fixed soon since it stank, but other than that, my night was fine.  I certainly slept well.  My chair at work isn’t comfortable, bugging my legs by the end of the day and usually by the end of the week, but again that didn’t prove to be an issue.  While they were bugging me Friday night, I woke up feeling great and ready to run Saturday morning.

I got on base with plenty of time, which is always nice.  I was possibly earlier than in years past since I got to park on pavement instead of in the weeds like the last couple of years.  Got through registration very quickly as well.  Wandered around a bit killing of time, and then it was time to run.

They had changed the location of a few of the obstacles this year, but there were no major surprises.  Not that I’m complaining.  I had a huge grin on my face from the moment I got on base until well into the run.  I’m surprised my face wasn’t hurting from smiling so much.

There was so water in the creek we run through in the first half.  A little bit of water to slosh through in the reservoir, but nothing like there was the first two years.  Lots of plants along the sides of the course.  It was beautiful as always.

And warm.  It has been cold down here, so I was worried I’d be doing it in the cold.  Wouldn’t be the first time, but I prefer it warm.  The sun came out before my wave started and stayed out.  It was definitely warm while running, but it was perfectly pleasant when I was done.

While I may not have been running with a friend, I made a friend along the way.  A woman was using me as the person to try to stick with, and we chatted some as we crossed back and forth, which was fun.

Afterwards, I made my now traditional stop at the Pit Stop Diner, which I always enjoy, to refuel before heading back home.  Along the way, I stopped at Downtown Disney, first time in about a year, and bought some pins and shirts.  Like I need more shirts.

As usual, it was a very long day, but a very fun day.  I need to sign up again for next year.  Can’t wait!

Friday, June 07, 2019

Summer League Week 1

The first week of June is over, and that means the first week of summer league is over.  I had my first game on Monday, so I got to start out the week playing.

This year, we are back to two leagues, and, unfortunately, I am in Men’s.  I know a couple of people on my team, at least from the group that was there this week.

About half of our team missed.  We only had 8.  Since 7 are on the field at a time, as you can see we had an issue with subs.  I got more playing time than I figured I would.

We were also back at Balboa.  This is where I played league games for years until the gophers became an issue.  They are still there, although we managed to avoid any injuries on our field.  There was one on the other field, sadly.  Hopefully, this is a temporary location and we will be back on good fields after next week.

And we lost.  Given our numbers, versus a fill team with almost a full line of subs, it wasn’t surprising.  Plus, they had quite a few guys who play together regularly, including guys from my Spring League team.  Still, we got to 6 points before they scored 15.  Considering they scored the first four in a row, that made me happy.  Heck, we stuck with them in the first half after those first few points since it was 4-8 at half.

Hopefully, when the rest of our team comes back we will be able to hold our own in a game.  We’ll find out on Wednesday.

Friday, May 31, 2019

New Job!

It’s been almost exactly 13 months since I lost my last job.  I was laid off when my company was bought out and my job moved to Texas without me.  During that time, I’ve worked two different temp jobs.  The first one didn’t work out, but the second one did.

In fact, this was my first week as an official employee of the company where I’ve been working for the past 9 months.  And I’m thrilled.  This is a company I’ve wanted to work at for years.  I’ve applied multiple times, but never heard anything back.  When I took the temp job, I was hoping this would be a way to get my foot in the door.  And it was.

I’m frustrated that I am just now earning vacation again, but other than that, I’m very happy with the rest.  Benefits have already kicked in.  I am getting a raise over my last real job (not to mention both temp jobs).  And I really do like my co-workers.  This is a job I intend to be at for quite some time.

And the best part is, it’s still in town.  The other side of town from where I work, but still, it is so nice not to have to leave town during commute times.  I don’t know how those who do it manage.  The year and a half I did it was more than enough for me.

Monday, May 20, 2019

Mud Factor San Bernardino 2019

I did my first mud run of the year just over a week ago on May 11th.  And it was a new to me mud run as well – Mud Factor.  It was over in San Bernardino, which was definitely a drive.  I was very happy to have an audio book to keep me entertained.

I must admit I was a bit disappointed by the mud run.  It was a 5K, which was the only distance they offered, but even for that, we did the same course twice.  That’s right, they didn’t have enough space to set up a 5K course.  And the obstacles were a bunch of climb over stuff.  Definitely not my favorite obstacle.  They did have us going through a couple of concrete tubes big enough we could stand up inside them, and that was cool.  There was an inner tube slide down a huge hill, but the line was long and I skipped it both times.  Honestly, it looked like it would probably freak me out more than it would be fun, and I was trying to get to some professional ultimate Frisbee games.

And then, they didn’t have anywhere for us to change afterwards.  Yes, we could get cleaned up, but no changing tents.  Seriously, that’s a minimum requirement.

This is on top of making us buy a shirt if we wanted one.  Yes, I did buy a shirt since it was a new to me mud run, something I wasn’t planning to do if I did it again.

Okay, yes, I would consider doing another Mud Factor mud run, but definitely not at that location.  It would have to be much closer and cheap (I did get a good deal when I signed up).  But this certainly isn’t one I’m going to go out of my way to do again.

What makes me nervous is that I am signed up for a second mud run in the same location in July.  Fortunately, it is a different company, so hopefully it will be better.  In the meantime, I’ve got Camp Pendleton and Irvine Lake on back to back weekends in June again.  Looking forward to them as always.

Thursday, May 09, 2019

Disappointing Beach Tournament, but Wonderful Weather

Saturday was the end of season tournament for spring beach league.  We went into the tournament in 3rd place.

And finished in sixth.

Of course, part of that is because everything comes down to the tournament.  We don’t get to count anything that happens in the previous weeks toward our ranking.  And we lost both of our games, so we wound up in sixth.

They were both close games, so that much isn’t disappointing.  We just didn’t manage to pull it off and blew leads in both games to wind up losing.

However, the weather was wonderful for a change.  There was fog when we got there, but that burned off early and we had sun and some warmth by the time we were playing the second game and by the time we left.  I couldn’t have asked for a nicer day weather wise.

And I know I say this every year, but I need to go to the beach more often.  It is absolutely beautiful down there.  It is a shame I only go during beach league season.  I’m thinking I may go down for some pick up again this summer.  Haven’t done that for a few years.  I just need to confirm times before I do since I will definitely be going with traffic on a Sunday afternoon in the summer.

Thursday, May 02, 2019

Final Regular Week of Beach League (and More Ultimate)

This last Saturday was the final week of regular games of beach league.  We had two games as always, and we once again had a mixed result, we lost the first and won the second.

My frustration was getting anyone else to focus on the game.  Our two captains and their usual sub were all gone.  The guy who is normally trying to lead things just wasn’t focused for that first game.  It was actually painful trying to get him to pay attention as he wander here and there talking about his past glories in the game and family history and this and that and anything but the actual game we were currently playing.  Fortunately, he did seem to focus more on the second game, which I think helped.

Not that he was the driving force behind our win, but we all seemed more focused that game, which helped all the way around.

And both were hard fought games.  We made the first game close, and the second was closer than I would have liked it to be even if we did win.

We are third going into the tournament this weekend.  Unfortunately, with six teams, only the top two teams get first round byes, and we are starting earlier than normal.  I’m going to have to be there are 9 AM, which means leaving the house even earlier to pick up the people I carpool with.  I’m not looking forward to that.

Anyway, that wasn’t all the ultimate I got this last Saturday.  After a couple of hours at home, I went back out to the LA Aviator’s game.  This is the men’s professional ultimate team, and I like trying to make some of their games each season.  This was their second home game and the first chance I’d had to watch them play this year.  It seems like I always go when they are playing San Diego, but they were actually playing San Jose this time, which was fun.  Even better, they won!  They got a few breaks, but the teams mostly traded points, so it wasn’t exciting in that regard, but there were some great plays and it was just fun.

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Easter Weekend Beach League

I’ve forgotten which week we are on, and I’m too lazy to go back and count.  But I did go to beach league again this last Saturday.

We had a split week – we won the first game something like 11-7.  But we lost the second game 8-11.  What was most frustrating was we dominated the team in the first half of the game.  It was 6-2 at half, and we turned that into a 8-11 loss.  Okay, so the other team really stepped up on defense, but we just weren’t trying as hard either.

There are six teams this year, and that seems to mean there are fewer people per team.  As a result, I’m playing more than I’m used to playing.  It has its good and bad points.  Obviously, I love playing the game; heck, I play for an hour or two straight on Sundays at pick up, so it’s not the play time or time on the field that are my concern.  It’s the fact that I feel more pressure during a league game.  That’s where my concern comes from.  I notice when I mess up and turn the disc over more.  Or when I can’t get my guy on defense.  How down are teams?  We are always looking for subs it seems, and even then, we didn’t have enough for a full second line.  That’s a lot of extra playing time for me.

It was overcast Saturday, and windy the first game.  It died down for most of the second game, which was nice, although I’ve played with stronger winds in the past.

And we finally got carpooling going!  I drove, and I had a full car.  Yes, that means driving across town, but it is nice not driving down and back by myself.

Our losses mean we have dropped down to fourth with a 5-4 record.  Still, I’m more than willing to take it, especially after our 0-3 start and my team not winning any games last year at all.

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

LA Times Festival of Books 2019

This past weekend was the LA Times Festival of Books for 2019.  Yes, of course, I went.

Actually, I went both Saturday and Sunday.  I probably would have only gone on one day, but the friend I always go with had something else she wanted to do on Saturday, so I agreed to go with her on Sunday.  But then I saw who some of the authors were going to be on Saturday only, so I decided I needed to go both days.  Yes, I skipped church on Palm Sunday to go back for the second day, too.

While it isn’t quite as much fun as it was back in the day with fewer authors I want to talk to all day, I still enjoy it.  I even talked to a couple of new authors, and I bought their books.  Now I need to find the time to read them.  As if I weren’t already drowning under books.

I stuck around on Saturday until 4PM, when Ridley Pearson was there signing.  I now have all of the Kingdom Keepers books signed.  And I found out he’s starting a new spinoff series next spring.  Not sure how I feel about that yet.

Sunday, we left around 3.  I can remember the days when we’d stay until it all shut down.  Honestly, by that point, I was tired, so I’m not complaining.  But I’m so glad I went back on Sunday since it was great to spend some time with Angelique.  We don’t see each other as much as we used to, so I’m glad we got to do that.

The weather was wonderful.  It wasn’t windy like it has been here at home for the past week.  Saturday was bordering too hot to be outside all day, but Sunday was cooler.  Couldn’t have asked for nicer days.

Obviously, that means I missed beach league on Saturday.  It looks like we won both of our games, giving us a 4-3 record!  They currently have us ranked 3rd overall.  I’m very happy about that, too.  I’ll be back in the sand this coming weekend.

Monday, April 15, 2019

The End of the Heater Saga. I Hope

I left you with a bit of a cliffhanger on my heater, or at least the new thermostat part of it.  We finally connected a week and a half ago for them to connect my replacement.  It took about an hour, and there was a connection he had to make in the ceiling.  Honestly, when he figured that out, I felt better that I couldn’t figure out how to take care of it myself.

Ever since then, it’s been working fine.  Okay, so it doesn’t take much right now since it is right at the part where you only need a little air to cool things down at night, but not much until then.  Still, when I do turn the air on at night, it cools it down in a matter of minutes instead of taking the better part of an hour at a minimum.  As much as this all cost me, I am happy about that.

And I’m having fun with my new thermostat.  It’s one I can control from an app on my phone.  Okay, so I’m not doing much with it yet, but it is still fun to be able to check on my condo and see what the temperature is when I’m not there.  It’s a new toy.  I’m sure I will be using it to adjust the temp more this summer when I am not home at my usual time in the evening and don’t want to cool an empty condo until I am heading home.

Friday, April 12, 2019

Beach League Week 3

I can’t believe I didn’t blog about this earlier.  You see, something strange happened at beach league last Saturday.  We actually won!  Even better, we won both of our games.

They were both hard fought games.  The first game was against a team which only had one sub, which definitely gets tiring on sand.  They were way ahead at one point, but we came back and won.  The second game was a back and forth battle the entire way, and we finally pulled ahead and won.  This puts us 2-3 on the season so far.

And once again, the weather was fantastic.  Lower 70’s and sunny with a mild wind.  Absolutely wonderful day to be at the beach.

They will have to win without me this coming weekend since I will be spending both days at the LA Times Festival of Books.

Tuesday, April 02, 2019

Beach League Week 2

We had two more games of beach league on Saturday.  And we lost.  I know, shocking, right?

There was a beach tournament going on about a mile from where we normally play, so we picked up and moved our games to be by the tournament.  I hated that!  I always have the worst time figuring out where everyone is.  I actually walked probably a mile in the wrong direction first.  But I still managed to be on time for the first game.  That’s how late we started.

The other thing is we were short on players.  I mean, when I’m playing three points in a row, that means we are short on players.  I normally only play a couple points a half.  We only had 8 guys show up, and with 5 on the field at one time, there weren’t a lot of subs.

We may have lost, but I had fun.  I even scored once and threw a score another time, which I was very happy about.  Yes, I got scored on and threw some turns, but we are focusing on the positive.

And, speaking of the positive, it was absolutely gorgeous.  It was at least mid-70’s and sunny.  There was a fairly steady wind, but it wasn’t a strong wind.  I really didn’t want to head home when it was time to leave, but I had some things to get back for, so I did.  We may have lost, but the weather made it worth it.

Friday, March 29, 2019

Week One of Beach League

Last Saturday marked the beginning of beach league for the spring.

Because of the drama with my thermostat, I missed most of it.  (I told you these three posts were all tied together, didn’t I?)  I was waiting to hear if they were going to come take a look at it on Saturday.  Once I told them they were supposed to be somewhere else, I finally got told to head on down to Santa Monica.  (They eventually settled on coming on Sunday.)  So I arrived at half time for the only game of the day.  I wasn’t that upset about missing the pickup they always have to give the captains an idea of who the guys are while they pick the teams.  That always goes on much longer than it should.

Anyway, when it arrived, we were down 2-6.  We finished the game 3-11.  Yeah, it was bad.

Not that we looked bad while we were playing.  It was just the missed throw that was just out of reach or the overthrown deep shot.  Hopefully, we will start cleaning that up as the season goes along.

What is funny is two of my friends are on the team, and I didn’t even realize it.  I didn’t know they had signed up, so I wasn’t looking for them.  I thought it was them, but they were wearing shirts that I know they don’t have.  Turned out, they had borrowed them.  Anyway, I’ll blame the fact that I was focused on my thermostat and arriving so late.  Yeah, that was the problem.

The guys seem nice, so hopefully it will be a good team and we’ll have fun.

The weather was nice and warm down there.  Warmer than it was at home, in fact.  It’s supposed to be nice again tomorrow, and I can’t wait.

Thursday, March 28, 2019

Family Visits

I’ve had family in town the last two Saturdays.  My parents took my niece and nephew out to Palm Springs for spring break, and they stopped in town both ways.

Saturday before last, they were in town all day.  They drove down Friday, although they hit bad traffic and got in later than planned.  Still, we were able to hang out all day.  I even took my niece and nephew on a brief tour of town, took them to church, my condo, and where I work.  We only got out at my condo, but since neither of them had ever been there, it was nice.

Last Saturday, they were only in town a few hours since they left Palm Springs that day.  Still, we got to hang out at my parent’s trailer for a few hours, have dinner, and play a couple of quick games.  It was great to see them both times.

Now, if you read yesterday’s post about my heater adventures, you’ll note that I was having issues both Saturdays.  Fortunately, that didn’t interfere with the visits.  I’d warned them, so if they were fixing my unit the first Saturday, they would have hung out at the condo for longer than the few minutes we were there.  However, the guy was in and out first thing, so I didn’t have to hang around the condo for him.  They were talking about coming out to look at my thermostat the next Saturday, but that got pushed back to Sunday, so again, I was free to do whatever we decided to do.  Hanging out at the trailer is the usual when my parents have that, so it wasn’t a surprise that’s what we did.

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

The Heater/AC Saga

I have some stuff to catch up on, and it all seems to tie in together, but I’m going to try separating them out.  Let’s start with the first one.

When I got home from work Thursday almost two weeks ago, I quickly realized my heater wasn’t working.  It was only 69 in the condo, and I had it set to increase from 68 to 72 about an hour before I’d gotten home.  So the next day, I called a heater/AC company.  They suggested a couple of things they tried on Friday night, but it didn’t do any good.  They came out first thing Saturday morning, and within a few minutes determined that my compressor had gone out.  Honestly, that explains why my unit was taking so long to heat or cool my condo.  There were some days I wondered if it would ever turn off, so I knew it was coming.

The price was a shock.  However, since the compressor was half the cost of replacing the entire unit, I decided to go with that.  After all, the unit is probably original to my unit, so close to 35 years old.  They were able to come out and replace it on Tuesday.

However, as part of this upgrade, I wanted to upgrade my thermostat to one I can control remotely.  I found one I thought looked good, but it was cheaper from Amazon, significantly cheaper.  So I ordered it from them, thinking that I would be able to figure out how to install it myself.

Spoiler alert: I couldn’t.

My old one was battery powered, and my new ones needs to be connected to power.  I got that figured out, but I still didn’t quite have all the wires connected right.  Part of that is because I was trying to hook things up for the wrong kind of unit.  Anyway, I got things the way I thought they should be, turned the power back on to the unit, and I heard a hum from a transformer in the ceiling.  After some texts with the guy who installed the unit, his boss, the owner of the company, came out Sunday after church.  Yes, I had one of the wires wrong, but he also thought the thermostat itself might be defective.  So I ordered a replacement, and it has arrived.  Now, I just need to get them to come out to install it for me.

It’s going to cost me a bit more than if I had told them to buy me one and install it when they were already out on Tuesday.  I should know better than to try to do something like that myself.  It’s just not my gift.  However, I do feel better knowing it might not have been my incompetence causing the issues with the new thermostat.

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Thoughts on the News

I know, I know.  Everybody and their brother has been offering their thoughts on the Special Counsel’s report and what it means.  And since everybody has done it, that means I need to jump on the bandwagon, too, right?  Actually, there are some things I think need to be said.  I’m seeing some of them be said, but I want a chance to put my thoughts down.  And since this is my blog, I get to do just that.

First of all, I’m going to cheat and link up to this article.  It shows a timeline going back to 2016 on how this entire mess started.  And make no mistake about it, this is a mess.  And it is a mess of political making.  Like Trump or not, this article makes a compelling case that the special counsel of the last two years was a shame from the very beginning.  Honestly, the article goes further than I think we can realistically go yet, but it makes a compelling case that we need more investigations and we need indictments, just not of President Trump or anyone associated with his administration, but people in the government who were working to undermine if not overthrow him.

Now, I can already hear some of you.  “But Mark, this came from the Federalist.  It’s a conservative site, so it can’t be trusted.”  HOGWASH!!!!!  I’m sorry, but this very argument is one of the reasons I am making this blog post.  Over the past few days, I’ve seen people attacking CNN for not spinning the results that Mueller found that there was no collusion.  Those are the facts.  I’m sorry you don’t like them, and I’m sorry you didn’t expect them.  But that is because the media was lying to you for the past two years during the investigation.  Yes, lying.  They’d come on with breathless reports saying that there was  bombshell, and implying if not outright stating that the walls were closing in and we’d see proof of collusion against Trump any day now.  And it all turned out to be a lie.  Yet, these people I’ve seen are only willing to trust the very news organizations who have been lying to them.  Something is very wrong here.

This goes back to the desire that we have right now to only get news that conforms to our biases.  So if you are only getting your news from MSNBC or CNN, then you are getting only half the story at best.  I’ve been saying for over a year that people were going to be very upset when the special counsel came back and found no evidence of collusion.  And I was right.  If the rest of the stuff in that article is follow up on and people are arrested and jailed (as it looks like they should if this is right), then there will be more people shocked because they know nothing about this.  Why not?  Because they are going to news sources that are actively trying to cover this up and focus on things that make Trump look bad, whether they are true or not.

That isn’t healthy for any country.  Or for anyone period.

We have a serious problem with the news in our country right now.  If you aren’t outraged by how they are spinning the news and burying stories they don’t want you to hear, then either you agree with them, or you aren’t doing enough to stay informed on what is truly happening.  We need journalists.  Real journalists.  We don’t have them, however, at least on a national level.  Instead, we have spinners for the Democrats.  Defend them however you want, but I don’t think you can after what we have witnessed over the last two years.

Now here’s the thing.  I do believe that Russia tried to interfere with the 2016 election.  There is plenty of evidence that they were placing ads and using bots to stir up trouble.  They wanted us fighting with each other.  Exactly like we’ve done for the last two plus years.  So, we’ve given them what they wanted.  Heck, we probably gave them much more than they ever thought they’d get.  And the news media, who has been screaming the loudest about Russian influence, has been doing exactly what Russia wanted us to be doing.

Then there are the conspiracy theorists.  I know, I know, that’s rich after the article I linked earlier, right?  Some of the comments I’ve seen on Twitter have been eye rolling.  And they’ve been coming from journalists.  Yes, I want the entire report released, but the fact that is hasn’t been released yet isn’t a sign of a cover up.  It’s a sign that it has to be handled correctly – you know, legally.  There are things that have to be redacted for national security reasons.  And everyone knows that.  But they are conveniently forgetting that and using it to spin that the summary we got from the AG on Sunday is a lie.

This part of things is reminding me of the birthers.  Remember them?  Back during President Obama’s first term, there was all kind of talk about how he wasn’t really a natural born US citizen, so he wasn’t eligible to be President.  Proof?  He wouldn’t release his birth certificate.  And then, when he did release it in 2012, the talk didn’t die down.  It got worse, with people trying to prove it was fake.  Meanwhile, I was over here rolling my eyes thinking to myself, give it a rest people.

I’m doing the same thing now and people twist themselves into pretzels trying to figure out how they can still prove that Trump colluded with Russia to steal the 2016 election.  This just plays into the charges that this has always been a witch hunt.

And yes, I used that term on purpose.  I’ve seen people saying that the Mueller investigation wasn’t a witch hunt because of the indictments that were handed down.  That’s all well and good, but let’s look at them.  Almost all of them were for Russians who did try to interfere in the 2016 election.  As I said, I believe it happened.  This doesn’t prove that Trump had anything to do with it, however, which was the entire argument we were hearing, however.

The ones that actually harmed American citizens?  None of them were related to the actual investigation.  Now, I’m someone who believes in pretty black and white right and wrong.  And people should be punished for breaking the law.  But being punished for crimes you committed over a decade ago?  That doesn’t mean the investigation was correct or there was anything to the charges.  Instead, it means that someone committed a crime a long time ago and almost got away with it.  And I think a good case can be made that some of the people who were arrested for lying were actually either entrapped or got a date or two wrong and misspoke.  Honestly, I feel sorry for them because they were trying to cooperate and yet are still being punished for it.

So yes, this was a witch hunt.  Still don’t think innocent people can get caught up in hysteria?  Let’s look at the original witch hunt, the Salem Witch Trials.  Do you think that any innocent people got arrested, tried, and executed during that sad chapter in history?  I’d bet all of them were innocent.  Want something closer to the present?  How about the McCarthy hearings.  Surely, innocent people got brought in and had their reputations ruined during that.  At least, that’s what I’ve always been told.

You don’t have to like President Trump.  There is much about him I don’t like.  But he is our President right now.  And the fact that he didn’t collude with Russia and isn’t a Russian agent should be good news that all Americans should be able to celebrate.  And the fact that the outcome isn’t want the media has been predicting for years should give you pause the next time they say anything – anything at all.

Thursday, March 21, 2019

Winter League Tournament

It’s been almost two weeks since the winter league tournament.  I should probably talk about it.

We did…okay.  We went 2-2 on the day, to finish a little lower than we were ranked going in.  And both of the games we won were very close.  I’m not sure why since we easily beat both teams when we played them in the regular season.

I could tell my teammates were very frustrated by how we did.  I think they really expected to finish the day better than that.  But it is where we are, and, honestly, I think a good reflection of where we are as a team.  And I say that as someone who knows my abilities or lack thereof.

It was a cool day.  While it didn’t rain (it had rained hard earlier in the week), it was definitely cloudy.  I only put sunscreen on once, which was a mistake.  I should have gone back for another round since I had a bit of sunburn.  It wasn’t too bad, but it was definitely noticeable.

Anyway, I did stick around through finals, and I was cold.  I’m so glad it is now spring.  Oh wait, it’s cold and rainy out again.  (Gorgeous this weekend, but it’s cold again now.)

And I went to the party afterwards.  Not too many from the team went, but I put in my appearance and talked to some of my friends from the greater LA Frisbee community as well.

Spring beach league starts up this coming weekend, so don’t worry, I’ll have more ultimate to talk about along with a few other things, hopefully.  I need to do some regular posts in the next week or two to catch up.

Friday, March 08, 2019

Final Two Games

We’ve played our final two regular season games of winter league over the last couple of weeks.  And the results were mixed.

The first game was our only rematch of the season.  It was a team we’d won against in the past, and we won again, but by an even bigger margin.  They had a sub the first time we played them, and she made a huge difference.  Even though we beat them horribly, they seemed to have fun.  We certainly did, but everyone was smiling as we walked to our cars afterwards.

Unfortunately, our game this week wasn’t quite so much fun.  Yes, there is the fact that we lost 13-15 after leading most of the game.  That is always frustrating.  But it got really chippy with some very questionable calls.  Some of the calls were legitimate, just not things that most of my teammates are used to being called on.  I was okay with those.  But some of the calls were definitely questionable.  And, as usually seems to happen, all the calls went to help the other team.  Yes, the fact that they won doesn’t surprise me, but I still put an asterisk next to their win because of how it happened.  I felt they took advantage of the calls.

The end of season tournament is tomorrow.  We are low enough that we won’t have a shot to win, which isn’t a surprise given the level of play the top teams have.  But hopefully it will be a lot of fun.  Overall, we are currently 5-3 for the regular season, much much higher than I’m used to for an ultimate Frisbee team these days.