Tuesday, September 30, 2008


Public Enemies Columbus Merchandise

We all saw the drop yesterday in the stock market which I think is 100% silly. The WORST thing you can do right now is worry and take your money out of the market. The reason the market tanked is that the $700,000,000,000 bailout deal went belly up.

Many are clueless what this bailout deal actually is so here is a way to look at it that made sense on TV last night.

Let's say we are in good times and a bank has $100 to loan. It loans it to a farmer who buys a tractor. The Tractor maker pays bills and puts the rest back in the bank and the banker loans the $100 to someone else who buys stuff and pays for stuff and pays his loans and that banker loans the $100 to somebody else you buys more things. That $100 bounces and bounces and people get paid and buy things over and over with that one $100 bill.

But in the last few years that banker has made a bunch of bad home loans and is not getting his $100 back. All of a sudden he is worried about loaning the $100 and does it less often. Now when three farmers want $100 only one of them gets it. The other two can no longer by that new tractor and because of that the tractor maker lays off people. The same people that were buying lawn mowers. Now the lawn mower people are not selling as many and stop buying blades from the blade maker.

See the problem?

What the government wants to do is to get those pesky bankers to start lending money again. They want to buy all the BAD loans the bankers are stuck with to take the burden away and make bankers happy.

Now when I say bankers I'm not talking the local banks but the BIG banks that loan the small local banks money.

So the next time you see a local banker - give him a hug and make him feel better. A happy banker will loan money and get the economy going.

At least that is my simple take on it.

I do have a question. I have about 60% of my assets in bonds. If there are no loans going out I would think bonds would go up in price. Are interest rates going to go lower to spur the economy thus pumping bonds? Or are bonds a safe haven and supply and demand is bumping their price. All I know is I only lost 2% yesterday and 4% this month.

I see we are having a "Dead Cat" bounce in the market today. Obviously I have never tried to bounce a dead cat as it is bouncing rather well.

It seems McCain is blaming Obama because the Republicans balked at voting for it?

WHAT??? Did I miss something? Seriously, I try to stay out of this stuff but I honestly think McCain is losing it a tad.


I have six Amazing Race contest entries - mail your 1st to last predictions to

I bottled another beer last night - this one is is an American Amber - sort of a Fat Tire clone. I'm also getting labels ready for the below. tasted pretty dar good and I can't wait for it to get carbonated. Drank a half bottle of green (new) beer last night and loved it.

Friday I'll be bringing some Columbus Carriage Classic Ale to The Kurth. The sad thing about this beer is I'm running low already, pretty tasty. I'm looking into larger distribution vehicles for beer (instead if 48 FREAKING bottles each batch). I'm looking into Party Pig's which hold 2.5 gallons.

DJ mentioned a brewery room for the basement for next years basement adventure. COOL! I love that woman.

MAN - where did the time go. I have to put out a fire.


Monday, September 29, 2008

Universal Makes Contact

Before I go into the "Universal" thing I must talk Brewers.

YIKES - it seemed like we had seven, "seventh games of the World Series" in a row. Now if the Brewers can only pitch Sabathia on 2 days rest I'll feel more comfortable. If he pitches 9 innings on Wednesday and if he can go 5 innings on Thursday, then he can have a day off and pitch Saturday. Then the Brewers are hoping Sunday will be a night game because he needs at LEAST 18 hours between starts!
Amazing race contest.

Be sure to email me your AR13 picks. Here are the contestants.

Rules - order the racers from 1st to last. Each time a team is eliminated you will accrue minus points for how many spots you were off. The final three spots will be awarded bonus points.

One word of warning - no going to cheater sites or anythign - this is a fun contest where winning is secondary to just having fun.

The Racers:

Aja and Ty
Andrew and Dan
Anthony and Stephanie
Kelly and Christy
Ken and Tina
Marisa and Brooke
Mark and Bill
Nick and Starr
Terence and Sarah
Toni and Dallas

Filming for the The Amazing Race 13 lasted for 23 days and covered nearly 30,000 miles. This season spanned eight countries in five continents, and visited some far-flung locales never before seen on the show, including Bolivia, Cambodia, and Kazakhstan. Brazil, New Zealand, India, and Russia were also listed as race destinations.

According to CBS, one team made "an unprecedented mistake that ultimately prohibit[ed] them from joining their fellow Racers at the finish line,"[11] thus making them the third team in the show's history—after Season 1's Joe & Bill and Season 4's David & Jeff—to not be present at the finish line.

Here is the route of the race.

Universal Makes Contact (sort of)

I received a surprise email last night from Bob Wagner (photo on right shows Bob telling some random guy how he would like the scene to play out).

If you recall Bob was the the dude on the hit TV show "It Takes a Thief" . . . . . .what? A different Bob? NO WONDER I WAS CONFUSED!!!

Well, it all makes sense now!!!

Bob was the first assistant director for Public Enemies, the guy that was pitbull-like, always yelling instructions and screaming BRUNO!!! Bruno this and Bruno that (Bruno was the special effects coordinator).

ANYWAY - it seems Bob's Valium prescription finally arrived and he emailed me. YEA ME!!!

I actually think he was just giddy as his Bears were winning last night!

So, back to reality, his email was a huge surprise on many levels. It was a short sweet email that basically said that now he had decompressed (Hollywood lingo for Valium arriving) and he enjoyed my blog.

WHAT??? He was reading my blog??? GULP! He went on to say that while my take on Public Enemies was not always correct (HEY - I was going on a schedule HE signed!! Yea, who is to blame there - more on that in a second.) it was entertaining.

First of all I want to give him a big man hug for telling me this. It truly is a compliment out of know where and I am honored he thought enough to mail me. It really is one of my highlights for the blog.

As for the "not always correct".

When I was in Oshkosh a person that read the blog and was an extra recognized me and I received a "pssssst Rod, I got something for you , I'll give it to you later". WOW - I was having a Deep Throat moment (the movie . . . .the NIXON movie - come on people get your minds out of the gutter), were we going to meet in the basement of a parking garage?

What I got was something I do not know what it was called. A memo of locations with scene numbers, actor numbers (which I figured out) dates and so forth. Where did THIS guy get it?

A ton of these memos were stuffed in his attache' case for props. All was right on schedule until Little Bohemia and then it was all FUBR.

Here is the funny thing. The next day I see this actor/extra and start talking to him, yet, he sort of stared at me blankly like "who are you?"

OK, we will play that game.

I did not know until later IT WAS DEEP THROAT'S TWIN BROTHER!!

Anyway - back to the email. I write Bob back gushing like a school girl meeting Johnny Depp and mention that my big memory of him was when he yelled at Scott and I as we were hunkering down in the 33 Graham in front of the green screen in Oshkosh.

We were in the car for two hours watching the practice scenes. Nobody told us to leave or stay, they just told us to park the car here and then they walked off. So we sat.

Bob is running around blasting orders and yelling for Bruno and he spots us. "HEY, YOU GUYS, YOU WOULDN'T BE IN THAT CAR DURING A BANK ROBBERY WOULD YOU"?

Well, actually yes we would, it would be better then running out towards the cops who kept getting killed over and over. But we thought perhaps it was not the best time to express OUR views on how the movie would be shot. Although it would have been cool if we could have done that (RESHOOT!!!!).

OH - he also said he was NOT herenothere which I was worried about. I did not ask if he was the other mole on the set.

So - that is my story. Keep track of Bob. He was the first assistant director for "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" (see trailer) staring Brad Pitt and Cate Blanchette due out 12/25/08. BOB - this movie looks awesome!! I hope at some point you can become the The Director as I looked at the movies you have worked on and loved everyone I have seen. You have very impressive credentials.

Good luck in YOUR future endeavors - I'm keeping an eye one you.

Enough for today. Have a great Monday and remember "Chuck" is on tonight along with Shirley Mansion (and Lilly from All My Children) on Terminator. The Sarah Connor Chronicles.


Sunday, September 28, 2008

Stressful Sunday

Well now - Packers and Brewers at the same time. Should be an interesting afternoon.

Yesterday we spent he day at the Quivey's Grove Beerfest and had a great time. 35 Breweries with 75+ beers.

We walked in and they give you these cool look glasses for beer. We purchased a couple pretzel necklaces and entered the beer tent looking for adubya, network and their wives.

We located beer inside AND friends outside the tent and started sampling. DJ's first beer went down like water as I think she inhaled it so we headed in for more.

There is the thing - those glasses were pretty deceptive. For $35 you can have all you can drink for 5 hours. I believe I had 12 glasses total. How much beer is that in reality? About three.

YEA - THREE BEERS for $35.

Not that I'm complaining. I kept wondering why I was not getting tipsy. Each glass is a little more then 3 oz.

Still - you can taste a lot of different beer and that is why you are there (plus yell at your friends . . .it was a little loud).

Between beers you can wash out your glasses at the giant trough - no swimming aloud.

Here is birthday girl DJ getting some Nut Brown Nectar (the best beer there) from Rogue Brewery located in Oregon (the State).

Once you got your little sampling you could wind you way outside to sit on the grass, it was a beautiful day. Just bring your own folding chairs. What was nice was that it was not a drunkfest but more of a celebration and good time.

Something that kept happening was when these two girls found out I wrote the PEC blog they insisted they get a photo with me. So I obliged.

However later I was looking for DJ and WHAT DID I FIND!!!!

Yea - when the cat's away . . . . . . .

And that is about it.

We're going to have to make this a yearly excursion.

Have a great Monday and keep those fingers crossed for Brewers/Packers, hope it goes better then Badgers/Brewers yesterday.


Friday, September 26, 2008

Amazing Race Contest

Public Enemies Columbus Merchandise

WELL - I got a call this morning from the Police Department. It seems they arrested someone last night who happened to have my cell phone along with a few other things odds and ends including a 9mm Glock.

Now they can charge the guy with position of stolen property also. I wonder what I can do with my phone once I get it back. I would not mind switching it with my current one (that whenever I sit on it it calls a random person).

I was going to go to the Farmers and Merchants Union Bank in Columbus yesterday to try to secure a $50,000 loan. You see there was this game that was THE LOCK OF THE CENTURY!! For one $50,000 wager I could win $2,600. IT WAS A LOCK.!! USC was a 25 point favorite and all they had to do was win by ONE.

WHEW - good thing I did not make that trip.

I know many of you just do not have time to read every blog every day so I have made it a little easier for you with Wordl's. Wordl takes the important words of a blog and assigns a weight to each word depending on it's . . . importancy.

So now you can ketchup on the week.

Yesterdays blog where I talked about the Brewers.

Wednesday I told you about the Sub-Prime hiccup.
Tuesday was President Roosevelt
And Monday was photo day of Lake Tahoe.
Any of you happen to catch the Brewer game last night! WHOO HOO!!! Grand Slam to win it. too bad the Mets also won.

One small problem with New York. Tropical storm Kyle which by Sunday could be Hurricane Kyle blasting the east coast with rain and raining out the final Met game and THUS giving the Brewers an extra day off.

Walgreen's - I had given p on those guys when it came to postcards. It seemed Corporate really does not like dealing with little guys that tire out filling reams of online paperwork and answering hundreds of questions about insurance, shipping rates and so forth, then getting three passwords to go on two websites to automate everything to make it easy for them to contact one of the seven departments in my postcard operations headquarters.

However - I received a call and they want to sell postcards at the Columbus Walgreen's! I suppose I'll call them back this morning.

With the Brewers winning last night their chances actually went DOWN because the Phillies LOST and are only 1 game ahead of the Mets. So NOW the chances of making the playoffs are Brewers 42%, Mets 63% Phillies 95%. ROOT for the Phillies to WIN.

OH - and don't count out the Houston Astros with a 0.02% chance.

Ryan Braun STILL has not made an error in Left Field. Also he is fourth in the League in RZR(Revised Zone Rating) which is the proportion of balls hit into a fielder's zone that he successfully converted into an out. PRETTY FREAKING GOOD Fielding.

Sunday Night - Amazing Race begins it's 13th season. I'll have a contest for anyone interested. After Sundays show - email the remaining order of the racers and I'll keep track. You will get negative points for how many away each team is from your pick. Closest to ZERO wins.

For instance. You pick Anita and Arthur – Married Hippies to come in 5th and they get booted 9th you receive 4 negative points. The grand prize will be something very special (as yet unknown).


One last thing - a Columbus friend Sean has been growing hops and wants to donate some to Grinders Island Brewery - REAL Cascade hops. Let's talk him and his wife to have a brew at The Kurth NEXT Friday night (I think Columbus Carriage Classic Ale will be available if it has carbed up enough).

talk at ya later.


Thursday, September 25, 2008

It's Pennant Fever

I have heard that the NY Mets are suspending the pennant race and are calling on the Milwaukee Brewers to follow in their footsteps.

The reason for the Mets want to suspend the race is they looked at the PECOTA standings and and it seems the Brewers now have a 47% to 39% chance to win the Wild Card (Phillies have thh otehr 12%).

PECOTA takes runs for and against, looks at opponents to be played and all sorts of other predictors and crunches some numbers.

The Mets are at home vs. Florida and the Brewers are at home vs. the Cubs. The Cubs are resting some players and just taking it easy. Florida is playing out their schedule.

Here are the probeble pitching match-ups for the Brewers

9/24: Sake Duke, LHP (5-14, 4.96) vs. Yovanni Gallardo (0-0, 1.80)
9/26: Ryan Dempster, RHP (16-6, 3.02) vs. Ben Sheets or Jeff Suppan
9/27: Ted Lilly, LHP (16-9, 4.17) vs. Ben Sheets or Dave Bush
9/28: Jason Marquis, RHP (10-9, 4.39) vs. CC Sabathia, LHP (9-2, 1.81)

Something I like has been occurring in the Dale Sveum era of managing. The Brewers are playing small ball. Instead of waiting for the Home Run they are creating good outs and moving the runners up. This is counterproductive when the Brewers were hitting two HR's a game. But when the team starts to wear down as a youthful team does this time of year you have to start being creative and Yost was not into "creative".

When the team is not hitting you MUST find ways to scrap out a run here and there.
Check out this 30 second video of the dumbest woman ever on the highway LOL

It reminds me of when my buddy Elweed and I were on a vacation in Colorado. He was asleep in a stoned out slumber and I was driving on the highway when when we came to a scene like this. Being somewhat evil I got close to the truck and Yelled "Watch out" and put on the breaks.

Elweed jerks awake and almost pee's his pants as he see's the truck about to hit us head-on.

I think I had to pull off the road I was laughing so hard.


While suturing a cut on the hand of a 75-year old Texas rancher whose hand was caught in a gate while working cattle, the doctor struck up a conversation with the old man. Eventually the topic got around to Sarah Palin and her bid to be a heartbeat away from being President.

The old rancher said, "Well, ya know, Palin is a post turtle."

Not being familiar with the term, the doctor asked him what a post turtle was.

The old rancher said, "When you're driving down a country road and you come across a fence post with a turtle balanced on top, that's a post turtle.You know she didn't get up there by herself, she doesn't belong up there, she doesn't know what to do while she is up there, and you just wonder what kind of dumb ass put her up there to begin with."


There have been some talk of a brewery in Columbus and of course I poo poo the idea. Seriously, a person making 5 gallon batches of beer (seven so far) and then thinking brewery or brewpub in the future is crazy talk.

I'm now reading a book called "Brewing up a Business - Adventures in Entrepreneurship from the Founder of Dogfish Head Craft Brewery" by Sam Calagione.

It's crazy talk I tell ya.


Wednesday, September 24, 2008

SubPrime Crisis 101

Public Enemies Columbus Merchandise

With all the stuff happening with the markets and the news that there are now cannibals running around on wall Street frightening investors perhaps I should replay a post from January (pre PE). Then I'll add some on the end about what is happening NOW!

This was written BEFORE the current crisis so when I said "which is HUGE" THAT part is now happening.

FIRST - I am not a professional - this is my take on things. Anything you see inaccurate please let me know!

Many people talk about the Sub-Prime problem but few actually understand what it is, why it's a problem or just HOW big of a problem it is (which is HUGE). So I thought I would explain it in a layman's way from both sides of the ledger.

This story is repeated a millions times but it's basically all the same - just pretend that John Doe is 5 million John Doe's. The numbers are only for example, just to give you an idea.

It's 2006.

John Doe works at McDonald's and makes $30,000 a year as a manager. He wants to buy a nice home and knows he can afford to pay $1500 a month and with the raising home prices his equity will grow. He see's a house he likes for $200,000 and goes to a random mortgage broker.

The broker asks, "how much do you make a year" and John Doe says . . . . . "ummmmm $400,000" and the broker says, "fair enough. I can put you in this home with no money down. I can even give you 110% of the amount you are asking. Your loan will have a rate for 3.5% for the first year and 10.5% after that. All you have to do is refinance within a year with the extra money you are getting. No problem, home prices are skyrocketing, you might even flip the house and make MORE money".

"Everybody is building new houses all over the place, they are popping up like mushrooms and people are buying right and left. Prices are going up, now is a good time to buy".

John Doe thinks about it and figures it's risk free, no money down, in fact he is getting PAID to buy a house and he takes the deal since home prices ARE going up!

THIS is a sub-prime loan. See the problem? Just wait it gets WAY WAY worse.

The Mortgage Broker then receives a huge amount of money for making the deal and when he talks to the Lending Officer who asks "did you check out the financials?" and the Broker says ,"yea sure" and the Lending Officer says "great, then so did I and all seems perfect" The Lending Officer then sells the mortgage to a Wall Street firm , the big investment houses like Bear Stearns or Merrill Lynch, Fannie May & Freddie Mac and so forth and he receives a huge amount of money for selling this loan.

Now Bear Stearns or Merrill Lynch, Fannie May & Freddie Mac and so forth have these loans and package them into High Yield AAA Mortgage backed bonds. Then with the help Standard and Poors, (who receive a huge amount of money from Bear Stearns or Merrill Lynch and so forth) sells the bonds the big boys such as Government retirement funds and huge foreign banks, and so forth.

As you see, EVERYONE in the chain passes on the these subprime loans to the next guy up the chain and at the same time gets paid major money.

And all is well. As long as people pay their mortgages everybody is making money all is good and everyone is getting rich.

BUT WAIT! All of a sudden there are too many homes on the market and John Doe's $200,000 house value dropped in price and has NOT gone up!! It's only worth $190,000 now because other houses around him are not selling. Mr. Doe goes to his lender to refinance because his rates are about to go up from 3.5% to 10%. HOWEVER - he is told that his house is not worth $200,000, he is "upside down" and they will not refinance, he owes more on the house then what it is worth.

He will have to pay a 10.5% rate.

Hmmmmmm - instead of a $1500 a month loan it's now $4000 and no way can he pay that much. And since he actually has zero money down and can not afford $4000 - he does not care or can do nothing about it, he is over his head!!

He moves away not caring about the house and the bank forecloses his dream house. He has bad credit but at least he is not $200,000 in debt.

Now the real problem comes. Millions of houses are being foreclosed. Those AAA Bonds, the ultra safe ones? Are now only worth fifty cents on the dollar IF they are lucky! Corporations that purchased these ultra safe High Yield AAA Mortgage backed bonds are seeing their value plummet. They are not MAKING money but losing it by the truck load.

Now another problem is happening. All the money that was suppose to go for new buildings and development, or pension funds that earn income . . . . has dried up . The same buildings that drives the American economy has come to a grinding halt.

All of the workers that had been getting paid are being laid off or finding there is nothing to build and now THEY are having problems making payments.

As a result over one hundred subprime mortgage lenders have failed or are filing for bankruptcy. New Century Financial Corporation, previously the nation's second biggest subprime lender is one of them. This adds to the problem. Even the companies that foreclose house's are going bankrupt. 6.5 TRILLION dollars in mortgage's have gone belly up - BLINK - disappeared!

Now with market paranoia setting in, banks have reined in their lending to each other and to business, which led to rising interest rates and difficulty in maintaining credit lines. As a result, ordinary, run-of-the-mill and healthy businesses across the world with no direct connection whatsoever to US subprime suddenly started facing difficulties or even folding due to the banks' unwillingness to budge on credit lines.

Another tiny problem is many times no one really knows WHO owns the foreclosed house. There are so many fingers dipping in the pudding and the loan has been broken up into so many pieces, no one knows who to buy the house from if then wanted to buy it.

Most experts think we are not even CLOSE to the bottom and maybe only 40% into this mess! This is the worse mess for Wall Street . . . EVER! This is why all of a sudden Wall Street and the markets are sitting up straighter and saying SHIT!!!! We're in deep do do!!!

American International Group, Inc. (AIG) is the worlds 18th largest company and is also a sub-prime company and has suffered a liquidity crisis following the downgrade of its credit rating, the United States Federal Reserve loaned money to AIG at AIG's request to prevent the company's collapse.

Of course with the HUGE banks having problems with money this trickles down to the smaller banks and this is why the Fed want to spend $700 billion of your money to help the Financial sector out of their mess and buy all of these bad loans and stabilize things.

So should you be worried? I'm not. What good would it do anyway. Just hang tight and look at it as another bump in the road. As
Maria Bartaromo from CNBC say's "it will all straighten out eventually, just hang tight and don't panic".

We sold our house in Madison because of a coin flip.

Our house started on the market at $220,000 and after 4 months we had been dropping the price and were STARTING to get worried because of the housing problems AND because we really did not want to pay for two mortgages . . . in fact we could NOT pay two!!

In the nick of time some people looked at the house which was on a nature preserve and the family liked TWO houses. The husband asked the wife which one she wanted. She could not decide so the flopped a coin. WE WON.

And that is why we were able to moved to Columbus. A freaking coin flip.


Have a great day!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Two Penny's For MY Thoughts Now.

Public Enemies Columbus Merchandise

I've decided it's time to up the price of one of my thoughts to two pennies now that a new-look penny is coming out. That's right, starting in 2009 there will be a series of four new pennies.


It costs more the 1 cent to make a penny. I don't even know why we have them. There has been a movement to get rid of the penny and round everything to the nearest nickle. This causes concern to some but probably the same concern in 1857 when we got rid of the half-cent.

In Europe, US military bases got rid of the penny in the 1980's and people complained for a few months but that was about it. Let's dump the penny so I can stop bending over to pick them up.

NEW LOOK PENNY'S - collect them all

BTW - you know you are getting old when you bend over to pick up a penny and look around for anything else you can pick up while you are down there.

Pizza and Beer!!

A little un-bottled Depp-elicious Double Chocolate Stout and Pizza. Even though it's a Brick Oven Tombstone I always trick it out with extra ingredients. Five gallons exactly of brew EXACTLY!!.


This is a Banded Garden Spider (Argiope trifasciata) that surprised the bejeesus out of me when I was doing a little pruning. Pretty harmless actually to humans.

You can get bitten but it would be more like a mosquito bite. One of their biggest worries for Mr. Spider are wasps which will kill it. These guys are good for your garden.

This is a large cement cutout of Lake Tahoe with a few facts and figures. The Average depth is 1000 feet with max depth 1645 (Lake Mendota in Madison has a max depth of 83 feet). It holds 39 trillion gallons of water. The residence time (how long it takes to completely exchange water in a lake) is 700 years, compared to Lake Mendota which is 4.5 years.

Lake Superior depth has a max depth of 1332 and 191 years to exchange the water.

This is from our deck looking down at Kings Beach and Incline Village. It's pretty dark out with a full moon lighting the water.

And the last vaca photo for the day is a random unknown bird.


On this day in 1944 President Roosevelt defended his dog Fala against the Republicans.

It seems there was a story claiming that Roosevelt had accidentally left Fala behind while visiting the Aleutian Islands earlier that year. They went on to accuse the president of sending a Navy destroyer, at a taxpayer expense of up to $20 million, to go back and pick up the dog.

This was totally untrue and Roosevelt went on to say that the desperate Republican opposition knew it could not win the upcoming presidential election and used Fala as an excuse to attack the president.

There is actually The Fala Speech given by Roosevelt

These Republican leaders have not been content with attacks on me, or my wife, or on my sons. No, not content with that, they now include my little dog, Fala. Well, of course, I don't resent attacks, and my family doesn't resent attacks — but Fala does resent them. You know, Fala is Scotch, and being a Scottie, as soon as he learned that the Republican fiction writers in Congress and out had concocted a story that I had left him behind on the Aleutian Islands and had sent a destroyer back to find him — at a cost to the taxpayers of two or three, or eight or 20 million dollars — his Scotch soul was furious. He has not been the same dog since! I am accustomed to hearing malicious falsehoods about myself — such as that old, worm-eaten chestnut that I have represented myself as indispensable. But I think I have a right to resent, to object to libelous statements about my dog.

Fala slept at the foot of his master’s bed and only the president had the authority to feed him; the White House kitchen staff sent up a bone for Fala every morning with Roosevelt’s breakfast tray.

After FDR’s death, Fala lived with Eleanor and, when the dog died in 1952 at the ripe old age of 12, he was buried near the president at his family home in Hyde Park, New York.

Have a great day and hug your dog when you get home.

Monday, September 22, 2008

No More Garbage?

Public Enemies Columbus Merchandise

Remember the rock band from Madison? The one that won "Breakthrough Artist award" at the 1996 MTV Europe Music Awards and two Grammy Awards, Album of the Year and Best Rock Album in 1998?

Then went on to do the theme song to the nineteenth James Bond movie "The World Is Not Enough" and their third album in 2001 "Beautiful Garbage" was named one of Rolling Stone's Top 10 Albums of The Year.

The band was/is lead by Shirley Mansion (photo by me).

WELL - it seems Shirley has turned up to be villain #1 in "Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles" Seen on Mondays on FOX. She is The Terminator!

I watched most of season #1 and did not even know season #2 had started yet. I'll have to watch it tonight!!
Getting back into normal life and DJ and I both noticed IT IS FREAKING DARK OUT when we wake up. My alarm was babbling at me and I knew it had to be wrong this morning but . . . especially after the Packer offensive front line decided to pack in in early last night just so they could see Rogers dance.

Speaking of the Brewers!

I looked at the last 20 game stats (since the Brewers are 5-15). The pitchers are hitting better then 5 of the regulars.

Brewer pitchers are hitting .231.
Braun - .205
Kendall - .203
Hall - .182
Counsell - .182
Cameron - .118

At least the Pitchers can hit because they are not pitching.
Bush - 4.88
Parra - 8.80
Suppan 10.47

I feel a little embarrassed about Lazy Man's Porter. I should have waited for it to carb up. It really was not ready to drink JUST YET.
Columbus Carriage Classic Ale and UNCLE NUTTY'S LOG CABIN ALE will be fully carbed at their coming out party. Not sure which one first. We'll have to see how they develop. I'm bottling the Depp-elicious Double Chocolat Stout tonight and I brewed another (yet to be named) brew yesterday.

All is good at Grinder's Island . . until Universal charges me $12,000 for that label.


DJ and I were walking around Kings Beach in Northern Lake Tahoe and came across this shop that had some sort of odd calling to me, yet, strangly enough DJ did not have the same reaction I had when we crossed paths with the little shop. Weird.

Something caught my eye and beckoned me.

One of the odd things about Lake Tahoe and maybe California was that all the animals had different heads then they do in Wisconsin. Here is a chipmunk that DJ was feeding and I was trying to rub it's belly (with no luck). DJ kept tossing food at it until a truck ran him over.

NO NO - that didn't happen.

This is a Blue Jay that kept waking us up each morning.

And this little guy was so friendly yet we never really let him near us.


I have not actually looked at all my photos yet so this is a new one I just discovered.

That's it for today - I have a week of work emails I must respond to (delete delete delete).


Sunday, September 21, 2008

I Guess I'm not a Weekend Blogger

Public Enemies Columbus Merchandise

$12,000 fines
Garden and Trip Photos

Concerning the $12,000 fine Oshkosh recieved from Universal.

Here is the deal. The Downtown Oshkosh Business Improvement District used a photo of Johnny Depp in a advertising campaign without permission and were fined $12,000. This is a BIG NO NO and I'm REALLY surprised no one put a stop to this before it happened. WHAT were they thinking, This is why there is a need for model releases.

Of course I received a few worried emails about postcards and so forth but those are way way different. The postcards are not using a person to sell something. Thus, no need for a model release.

I try and try but the words are not really coming for the rest of the blog so I'll do what I can and you will have to bear (bare?) with me.

If you want a low down on some Kurth action that was pretty funny take a look at Vix's blog. I think there was some very close "pee in the pants" moments.

First of all - beer, or Grinders Island.

I had positive reactions for the most part even though I was not REALLY happy with the Lazy Man's Porter. HOWEVER. I am REALLY excited over the next two beers coming out. I mean REALLY happy. The Columbus Carriage Classic Ale is way yummy but needs to carb up a little. The MapleNut Brown Ale (yes, I said MapleNut as one word (a Vix thing)) was very foamy and excellent after 13 days in a bottle. Just a tiny hint of Maple - perfect.

My friend Elweed who has no qualms on berating my beer and telling me ANYTHING and everything that is wrong loved both and said "Rod, these are professional beers".
Other news.

Finally watched the LOST finale' WOW. If you have not watched it yet it's pretty good. Answers ALL the questions. LOL

I'll leave you with a few photos from vacation and the garden.

This is the Sweet Autumn Clematis. It's 1st year it grew 9 feet. On average once it is established it shout grow about 25 feet a year. You cut it down to 6 inches every spring. It's blooming with thousands of tiny white cross flowers.

The Astors are blooming also with many many honey bees that are more intent on getting pollen then worrying about some guy with a camera. I don't mind these little guys at all as they have one thing on their mind.


The flight back from Lake Tahoe was a smooth ride and we passed this storm over Western Nebraska. We were at 39,000 feet traveling at mach 0.8.

Photo from Lake Tahoe outflow.

And one more of the house photo (don't worry, I took 160 photos on vaca).

And one more photo of the house we stayed at. No worries - I took 160 photos - you will see ALL OF THEM (insert evil laugh).

that's it. got football work to do.

OH - I'm making a double batch of Victory Malt Doggie Beer Bars today. Put your orders in!


Wednesday, September 17, 2008

The Curse of Favre!!!!

Here is a photo I forgot to post yesterday.

A couple more photos sitting at various positions on the deck of the house.

This area is 100% Ceder evergreens and 90% of the houses are made out if this wood. Lake Tahoe was a timber area that surrounds the actual Lake Tahoe the largest alpine lake in America.

The interesting thing is that there is only two ways for water to leave the lake, evaporation or this tiny stream.

Once water reaches the lake from snow or rain "on average" it will take 700 years for it to flow out (compared to 2 years for Lake Erie).

There is enough water in this lake to give every person in the U.S. 50 gallons a day for 5 years. it's 1700 feet deep.

So our goal today was to head south to view the southern popular end of LT and maybe a casino.

But first - a DJ photo.

There are very few places to stop and take photos of the scenery but when there IS a place I go snap happy.

The problem with the above photo is scale. You can't see how high that background mountain is. We talked about it and it was like taking a photo of the Grand Canyon - no scale to show how BIG it is.

Notice Kurth T-shirt

After leaving this beautiful area with way more photos then I'm posting we go UP higher and have an in vehicle experience.

You know when you are on a mountain road and there is a cliff DOWN on one side and a cliff UP on the other side. Well, the road was like that and then BAM, there was a cliff DOWN on the left side and a cliff DOWN on the right side. NO shoulder, NO railings. SPACE. DJ is saying WHAT'S HAPPENING and I'm looking strait ahead and the road slops down into space ahead.

FREAK OUT!! seriously, there was NOTHING to keep a car from plunging on either side of this small road. I wanted to stop for a photo but perhaps now was not the best time.

So we continue on to south Lake Tahoe which is in Nevada and it has LV style casinos. Big ones. We eat at The Hard Rock and check out Packer super Bowl odds (8 to 1) and then for lack of anything better we all grab a seat at a Roulette Table.

The next story is 100% true and I will always remember it.

We all start placing bets here and there and some are winning and some are losing. I have a plan and am watching for series like lots of odd numbers or 3 REDs in a row and then playing the opposite. I'm up about $45 but Don, DJs brother is raking in the cash.

He is hitting numbers right and left with $3 bets on one number and winning. He was up a few hundred at one point and starts to place 5,7,9 dollars on points.

Don who is a HUGE PAcker fan (even though he lives near Dallas) decides to play #12 Aaron Rogers and we say maybe he should put $ on Favre #4. He puts $5 on Favre and we laugh joking it will hit the number and bounce out.

The ball spins around and bounced and lands on #4 and Don jumps up pumping his fist and we are all screaming and making a scene. YEA BABY!!! and then at the very last second it bounces to #16 next to it!! NO!!!!!

A true Favre moment. Giddiness followed by extreme disappointment. We laugh pretty hard at Dons bad luck.

Here is an action photo of The Don at work. That "0" you see? He had $$ on that baby when it hit.

Speaking of bad luck. As we were leaving the casino I noticed this gruesome scene.

Has anyone seen Left Hand Louie lately???

That 6 foot long trench looks pretty ominous.

It rained on the way back to the house. First time in 4 months!

That's it from here. talk at ya later.

Note to balderdash - I can not get into the protected FO. ????? Also your work email is FUBR. no biggie at the moment.