Monday, July 05, 2010

Independance Day

I understand the appeal of fireworks - I do. There's nothing like a match and a flame for some good, clean fun. Pretty lights, loud noises, I get it. I also understand the run up to the Fourth of July - set off a few every night to get the anticipation for the big night going. 

It's July 5. I'm sitting in my dining room listening to the neighbors set off yet another round of fireworks. They've been doing this for 4 nights running. Seriously? Do you really have that much disposable income? I know those things aren't cheap and it's been 30 minutes every night straight. It's Michigan here - have you heard of the recession? Perhaps next year we could talk about putting your money into something a little more productive. Maybe you need a deck or your house needs to be re-roofed? I know a guy, I'll get you his number.

Sunday, July 04, 2010

Book Reviews - June

I'm printing all my book reviews for June at one time. I'm lazy - sue me.

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Stieg Larsson, originally published in 2008
I resisted reading this for a long time - mostly because I didn't know what it was about and I hate to read a book because everyone else is reading it. It came up as a selection in one of my book clubs and I thought, "Oh why not". I'm so very glad I did. Even my mother, who doesn't much like crime stories is enjoying it.

I loved the characters and enjoyed their eccentricities (who doesn't have a crazy friend?). I'm waiting for the second book in the series, but rather sad that there will only be 3.

It's not a beach read, there are too many things happening. It is a good summer read.

Bicycling Magazine's Complete Book of Road Cycling Skills, edited by Ed Pavelka, originally published in 1998
This is a collection of articles originally published in Bicycling Magazine. There are sections that cover basics, essential skills, traffic safety, riding stronger and longer, off-season training, how to eat to ride, and medical concerns.

This is the perfect book for a beginning cyclist. There's so much I don't know that I didn't know where to start. Essentially I walked to the sports section of my local book store and started pulling books off the shelf. A lot of them are way over my head, but this was fit perfectly. I have a feeling that I'll refer to it for a long time and eventually pass it on to someone else.

My  Lurid Past, Lauren Henderson, originally published in 2002
The one word I would use to describe this book is filthy. The main character is a food public relations person representing a young chef who's doing his best to "shag" all the girls, snort all the cocaine, and drink all the alcohol in London. Juliet is doing her best to keep up with him. While I don't live like this, it was fun to read about other people who do. And as filthy as it was, it was the first book in a very long time that made me wish I was at home reading every second. 

Too Many Blondes, Lauren Henderson, originally published in 1998
There's is nothing like a good British mystery to keep me reading. The main character of this one is a sculptor who moonlights as an aerobics instructor. Henderson has taken me through the rave clubs of London and I enjoyed every minute of it. Plus there's quite a good mystery to solve. A fun summer read.

Saturday, July 03, 2010

Tour de France 2010

If it's July, it's TdF. I'm in front of the television spinning yarn and watching Bobke call the race. It's heaven!

The Team Radioshack blog is here. Should prove to have some interesting pictures and commentary this month. I will be there for the recap every night.

Friday, July 02, 2010

Friday Night - Movie Night

My daughter and a couple of her friends from elementary and middle school made a pact a long time ago that they would all watch the Twilight movies together. Tonight was the night for the latest version of teenage, vampire angst. Since they were all coming to my house afterward, it made sense to stay and watch the movie. I kind of wish I hadn't.

First, I couldn't sit with them because that was just awkward. I spent the whole time hoping people didn't think I was some wacko middle-aged woman desperate to "connect" with Edward or Jacob. (I am insecure enough that I waited for the girls to leave their seats after the movie was over so I could be seen leaving the theater with them.)

While the werewolves provided some very nice eye candy, the acting was ... let's just say it could have been a lot better (seriously, a lot better). I realize there isn't much to work with, but maybe better actors - if not a whole new script.

I did quite a bit of eye rolling and dropping my head on the back of my seat in disgust. Totally not worth it. Next time, I'll bring knitting and sit in the lobby. All the real life teenagers provide plenty of drama that's probably more fun to watch that this movie.

Thursday, July 01, 2010

Here We Go Again

Remember when I said I was going to write every day? That lasted all of 2 months. So, here we go again. At least this month, I'll have things to write about as the Tour de France starts just 2 days from today!

Because I know myself, I need something prodding me to make sure I do write everyday. So, I've signed up for July NaBloPoMo (National Blog Posting Month). I'll have daily prods in case I can't think of anything to write. The theme for this month's NaBloPoMo is Saved.

I drive a hoopty. It's a 2005 Subaru Forester and I love it, but it has 125,000 miles on it and needs more care than I have been able to give it recently. I took it in for an oil change last week and since the tire place was right next door to the oil place I took it over there for a tire rotation and balancing. The tire guys showed me that the tires are wearing unevenly and suggested I go in for an alignment.

The guys at the alignment place did their thing, but when they took it out for a test drive, it was making a funny noise. They put it back up on the lift and discovered a hole where the bolt that holds the steering wheel in place should have been. Let me just pause for a moment to let that sink in. The bolt that holds the steering wheel in place was gone. That means that on any one of my daily trips into work I could have lost control of my car at highway speeds. I shudder to think about all the things that could have happened.

They put a new bolt in place that will keep me safe and will order a part to completely fix the thing. The alignment guys at Ann Arbor Muffler saved me.