Tuesday, April 12, 2011


My hot tub time machine took me back to 1998 today.

The Man (Jerry Brown) took away my cell phone today. All these years I was told my job was so important that I needed to carry my phone 24/7. This was a condition of employment. Well, apparently it wasn't all that important.

Uncle Jerry told us this was coming, and management's expectation was that everyone would simply use their personal cell phones instead. Everyone has one, right? I don't. Even if I did have one, or if I get one, I am in no hurry to let the State use it.

Most of my coworkers shrugged it off because they have unlimited minutes and unlimited text. They say it's no big deal. Really?

It's no big deal that the employer we work for—the one who has constantly threatened layoffs and pay cuts; the one who has furloughed us and cut our holidays; the one who has increased our contributions to health care and retirement; the one who is threatening to raise our retirement age from 55 to 62—wants to use our personal phones? No big deal. Oh, and we have to post our personal cell number on the web site and in e-mail signatures? Um, no.

Because I refused to do this, my phone was replaced by a pager. A PAGER.

Now, this will save the State approximately $31 per month. I completely agree with the cost savings. The State absolutely needs to cut costs, but these cuts should come with reduced expectations. If you want 24/7 coverage, that costs money. Don't expect it on my dime.

In the end, having a pager really shouldn't hinder me much because, as you know, vast banks of pay phones are everywhere. Server down? No problem! Just page me and I'll get right back to you.

Saturday, April 09, 2011

Salmon Falls

I managed to get out for a quick loop out at Salmon Falls this morning before little league. It was a bit cool, but not so bad once I got warmed up.

Trail conditions were just about perfect on 90% of the loop—slightly damp and grippy. The stream crossings were still running high, and there was a bit of mud here and there. Unfortunately, the poison oak was everywhere.

I worked hard on the climb up Flagstaff hill. By the top I was soaking wet. The descent after that was freaking cold.  Here's a view from the top:

Everything is very green from all the rain. This is what we mountain bikers like—smooth ribbons of singletrack snaking though nice scenery.

Oh yeah.

For all my fishing friends:

I'm really liking the new bike. The 130mm of travel and the stiff 20mm thru-axle really gave me a lot of confidence bombing down hills. Pretty fun.

The one downside of the front axle system is having to go old school with the tie downs. Back in the mid-80s, when all we had were bolt-on axles, this is how we transported our bikes until quick releases made their way onto mountain bikes. I'll have to see what my options are for a more sophisticated transport system.

That's about it for now. Later.

Friday, April 08, 2011

Batting Practice

I made this little video of Spencer hitting to get him psyched up for his first game. Enjoy.