Tuesday, September 30, 2008

The pictures are here.

If you want to see my pictures from my trip back to Boston, just click the link below

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Boston Library and Fenway Park

We got downtown and, guess what? It was raining. We got to the library and had no idea where to look for the collection of my grandfather's writings, so we ask the gentleman at the information counter. Fully expecting him to say "Of course I know where the Max Sartin writings are, we all do! They're right there, in the middle of the main hall. By the way, can I get your autographs?", I was surprised when it took him several tries to find it on the computer. We found it in Rare Books Department, which was not only closed on Saturday, but also requires that you set up a viewing in advance. Bummer, we didn't get to see the collection, but at least we know that it really exists, and we got to wander around the library. Having used up just a fraction of the time we allotted for the library, we decided to hop the T and head over to Fenway Park. There was going to be a game later that day, so you could see them gearing up for it, the scalpers were out and we were asked at least a dozen times if we wanted tickets. We walked around the area, got some good pictures and then headed out to the family reunion.






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Monday, September 29, 2008

I'm so dry.....

My clothes are dry, my hair is dry, my feet are dry and the ground is dry. I walked across the yard and am still dry. I spent an hour dragging all the crap out to the curb for cleanup day and I was dry. I love the desert! It was in the 80's today and I was comfortable, turned the swamp cooler on vent and the house was perfect. Mind you, I had a great time back in Boston, the trees that were turning were beautiful, and everything else was so green. And it was fantastic to see everybody. But - it's nice to be dry!

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MBTA, or just simply "The T"

Day 2 started out with an early run into Boston to see the Fondo L'Adunata Collection at the Boston Public Library. This includes the writings and corrospondence of Max Sartin, the original. We had decided that driving into the center of Boston would be a) confusing, b) expensive to park c) impossible to navigate, d) frustrating or e) all of the above, so we figured we would park the car close to where the family reunion was going to be (at 1:00) and take the T into town. My older brother was old enough when we lived there to have taken the T as a teenager and wanted to check it out, and since my friend (you may know her from here as nikita4773) always talks about the T, I decided to join in the adventure. So we went to the Grove Street exit right after Needham, parked the car and hopped the train. In some ways riding the T was just like riding Trax here in Salt Lake City, and yet at the same time it was completely different. Getting on the T without paying would be a hard feat to achieve, Trax is not so hard. The biggest difference was the scenery on the way in. New England countryside is completely different than Utah (duh), you'll see that by the pictures when I get them done. Two things struck me the most on the ride, one was that this was an old, old system. The stations, the rails, the tunnels, bridges and all, especially when we got into city and went underground into the subway system that has been around since 1914, was nothing like the shiny new Trax we're used to. The other was the effect the humidity and rain has on all of this. Bridges don't get rusty here like they do in New England. Yeah, our cement cracks and breaks, but the metal stays fairly fresh. Rust is everywhere back there. Moss too. Stuff grows on every surface that isn't constantly rubbed clean. Well, we finally made it downtown, it wasn't raining hard and the clouds that were hovering below the tops of the buildings gave for an awesome sight. (see picture at right). That's all for now, next post will include The Boston Public Library and Fenway Park, in the rain!

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And let the eating begin......

We flew into Providence, got our rental car (Chrysler mini-van, we were stylin'!) and headed out to the Cape. After we got settled into our hotel room, a nice, clean, respectable but very small room in a remodeled older motel, we headed out to find something to eat. We found a little cafe arount the corner called The Narrows and had what I came all this way for; clam chowder and fried clams. We got back to the hotle just in time to get a call from our younger brother, he was staying with relatives just around the corner from our hotel. The first thing he asks is "you guys coming over for dinner?" Yeah, we were stuffed already, but we wanted to go visit so I told him this and asked "there's no way we can come over to visit and not eat, is there?" Yeah, right. These are old Italian ladies. So we went over, had some crab keiche, espresso and home made biscotti. Sat around and chatted with them until midnight and then headed back to the hotel. Thus endeth day one, but not the eating.

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Sunday, September 28, 2008

I'm leavin' on a jet plane.

As usual, I've been on vacation and didn't bother to tell you all beforehand. Easy reason, mentioned it before; I really don't want to advertise when the house is going to be empty. I went back to Massachusetts for a family reunion, and my great-aunt's 100th birthday. We missed her actual birthday, but she got to sit in the Red Sox's box at a game last week, and if you saw a little old lady get brought out onto the mound with the mascot, that was my great-aunt Grace. We left Salt Lake at 8 am, on, you guessed it, Southwest Airlines. We were on the self-proclaimed "Love-Flight", and as we were rising to the cruising altitude, the flight attendant started singing "Loving you is easy 'cause you're beautiful......" The rest of the flight was peppered with the comedy act that included references to the flight attendants stint at Joliet Prison and the battle of the pilot's parents (both satirical and not real). We stopped over in Chicago, just long enough to hop the flight that brought us to Providence, RI. Now, I don't know if you have been watching the weather for New England, but a hurricane just bypassed the area this weekend, it's been raining almost the entire time. The night we flew in we watched the weather and they predicted 11" inches of rain for one part of Cape Cod. Just for the record, Salt Lake City averages 14" A YEAR. Yeah, that's what I get for saying I missed the rain. Anyway, I'm going to break this story into little parts because you've probably hit your limit by now, so more later.....

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Thursday, September 25, 2008

Charlie bit me!

- Max

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Parent-Teacher conferences are over!

And I had only one parent that was mad at me, because I accused his daughter of texting while in class. I apologized for making that assumption, but pointed out that she has to expect that reaction when she sits in a hot room, wearing a hoodie and twiddling her thumbs inside the pocket of the hoodie. That was about it, except I found out that the room the Foreign Language teacher moved into is in a cell phone dead zone, about 90% of phones do not work in there. It has no windows, but I still want to arm wrestle her for it - cell phones are currently one of the biggest teaching pains in the @$$. I even looked online for a cell phone blocker one time, and was all ready to fork out the $200 for one, until I checked it out on the internet and found out that I just might find Homeland Security at my classroom door one day, and from then on when asked, the administration would be required to answer "Mr. Who? No we never had a teacher here by that name."

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Rainbows of happiness.....

It's parent-teacher conferences today and we're all in the Home Ec room having a wonderful Chinese dinner before conferences officially start. The librarian and I are 2 guys sitting at a table with 3 women. We pass out the fortune cookies and all the women get fortunes like "perseverance will pay off", "your talents will show in an unexpected way" and another equally blase one. I open up mine and it says "Love is a present that can be given every single day you live" and the librarian gets "Love is sharing rainbows of happiness."

Monday, September 22, 2008

Love is in the air......

It's officially the first day of fall and yes, I know that spring is the season of love. But it wasn't the beginning of spring that I came home to see this (see picture below) hanging across the street right by my house. Ok, ok, I'll also agree that the sentiment hanging there doesn't really qualify as romantic love, which is the feel of the song my title comes from. Ah, well. It was in the air.
- Max

Sunday, September 21, 2008

New Blog

My little brother and his wife are big car fanatics, something I just can't understand. They belong to a couple of car groups in the area and are simultaneously restoring a 1968 Ford F250 and a 1969 Mercury Cougar convertible. Silly them. Anyway, they now have their own blog, and if you want to go visit it, all you have to do is click on the picture....Welcome to the Blogging community Gearheads.
- Max

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Back of Beyond at it's best......

3 brothers and 3 Jeep Wagoneers, ranging from 1965 to 1985. What a lot of fun that was, cruisin' around the dirt roads on BLM land, camping wherever we stopped for the night. The Jeeps are gone now and the BLM is a lot stricter (more strict? increased strickedness? have maximized their strictiosity?) so for the most part you can't just plop your tent anywhere you want. I can understand their point; there's a hell of a lot more people cruising around the area and we humans are a messy bunch. Slobs, if we're being truly honest. Anyway, just had to put the picture up here and reminisce. Thanks for listening....

Lisa & Jim

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Why I became a teacher...

I was going to post this anyway, but decided on the title in direct response to Paperback Writer's post titled "Not Why I Became A Teacher";

It's midterms so we're having a catch-up day in my UBSCT prep class. One of the assignments I'd given them was a couple of Sudoku's, and I caught one of them copying off a paper. I called him on it and started a discussion about copying, noticed there was no name on the paper he was copying and asked him who he had gotten the paper from. Fully expecting a slew of deflecting answers, I was surprised when he said he had found it on the floor. OK, I wasn't expecting that. Then, figuring I'd caught him in a lie, I asked "Then why didn't you just write your name on the paper?" In what I still think was a totally honest response he answered "Uh, that would be dishonest!" Adolescent logic still baffles me, and once again they've proven I can still be surprised.

Looking out the window 4th period today I saw a couple of cop cars parked side-by-side on the street across from the school. Cars would drive up behind them and they would just wave them around. Then, occasionally, they would flip on the sirens and take off after a car. I figured it was a speed trap and after a small disruption we continued with class. They were still there when shcool got out, and I noticed a cop sitting on a chair in front of the Seminary* right across from the cross walk. I wondered what he was doing, and why he had a couple guys hanging around him. I get to talking to one of the guys with the cop, he just crossed the street in front of a car, and found out it was a crosswalk sting. Utah law says you to yeild the right of way to anyone in a cross walk, even if they are on the opposite side of the street of your travel. Which is a good thing, because at least twice a week I almost get run down crissing to or from the school. The principal comes out on her way out, finds out what's going on and decides she wants to catch a car. So she walks towards the curb and waits for a car, steps out into the crosswalk and, awwwww, bummer, they stop for her. She crosses the street, goes over to talk to the cops and when her secretary (and afterwards other staff members) come out, she yells across the road to them to wait for a car. It becomes some kind of game - which staff member will catch the car? I had to go back in and take care of some stuff, but from what I heard the game only lasted another couple minutes.

* In Utah every high school, and any Jr. High that has 9th grade, has an LDS Seminary building across the street from it. The LDS Church offers religion classes for their members that go to that school, and for the most part the LDS students take those classes. Public Schools are not allowed to support religious classes, but we do give the students "release time" to go to Seminary classes. They get no credit for theses classes, we are not responsible for taking roll and cannot reprimand them if they sluff seminary class. As far as the public school is concerned they are just released from being at school, and we're not responsible for whatever they do during that time. Seminary buildings are always across the street from the school, on private property, and completely funded by the LDS Church.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

The Hacienda

My little brother turned a truck bed into a trailer, and with a carpet kit and this tent, had the greatest camper. Lightweight, could carry a ton of stuff in it and relatively easy to set up and tear down. And the best part, it looks like an old pioneer covered wagon. I wanted one. I found this picture while going through some old CDs I'd had hidden away in the garage, along with a bazillion other pictures. I have no idea exactly when it was taken, but according to the details listed on the picture file, it was last modified on 1/10 of 1999. I think that's when I scanned the original picture. I think he still has the truck trailer, although the carpet kit and tent are long gone. Look for more of these trivial pictures from my past in the future, as I continue going through the 145 CDs sitting in the box under my desk. Oh, and there's a bunch of Super 8 movies sitting in the box with them, from back when I was 12 or 13. I want to get them transferred to DVD, and maybe inflict you with them here too... (Bwyahahahahahahaha).

Friday, September 12, 2008

No posting today.

Sorry, today's post has been cancelled because something has crashed on my computer, and my mouse is missing....

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Dinner and a show.

Had dinner at the Cindy Lee Cafe, which is right across from the Galivan Center Trax station. The dinner was really good, as it always has been, and we even got a surprise show while we were waiting for the University train. "Homeless on Parade" started with a homeless guy being pushed in front of a car, which fortunately was going slow enough to avoid him. That was the opening act that riveted us to the action, anxiously awaiting answers to how did this man come to be pushed, why was he pushed and who did the pushing. This wonderful little story unfolded in front of us as we were slowly introduced to the characters one by one. Roadkill man gets back up and continues arguing with wifebeater man, who then allowed roadkill man to throttle him about the face without any resistance. At this point the action was coming fast and hard, roadkill guy would hit wifebeater man in the face a couple times and then walk away. Wifebeater guy would then yell after roadkill, using the "N" word (he was African-American), calling him on and then just stand there and let him punch him in the face a couple times. Finally roadkill man gives up and starts walking away from the group, wifebeater man keeps yelling after him "just two more times, just hit me two more times" and something about getting his name. Roadkill man kept walking down the street towards the corner when we get introduced to wifebeater spouse, who all of a sudden takes off after roadkill man. Halfway down the block wifebeater spouse yells out "Hey, beat the s&$% out of that n#%%&@". We look down towards roadkill guy just in time to see another homeless guy walking past him towards wifebeater spouse, completely confused by what was being yelled at him. Roadkill guy walks around the corner as wifebeater spouse takes off running after him and confused guy just stands there bewildered. This is when our train came and we had to leave. Hopefully next week we'll get to see Acts III & IV.....

And finally, on the way home I saw the best beggar sign ever, written on cardboard with the typical magic marker, it said

Will convert
for food.

Danger! Danger! Will Robinson.......

Do you ever use public computers to access your blog, email or other online account? Do you always restart the computer when you get off? I usually do, and from now on I always will.

I cam into class, got onto the computer, which was already on, open up Internet Explorer and go to my web site. I go to log into my blog and, instead of getting the login page I usually get at an unfamiliar computer, it brings me straight to the dashboard, skipping the login page. Now that's not unusual for me when I'm at home, my computer remembers me and automatically logs me in. The problem is that it's not supposed to do that at a University computer and I ended up at someone else's dashboard. Because they had left the computer without turning it off, the computer remembered their password and send me to their blog. I had complete access to it. Now, if it were someone I knew, I might have been tempted to mess around on there, post absurd things, change their password or other fun stuff. But, alas I decided to be good and all they'll see in the morning is a post that basically says "Hi, you left the computer on, I got on your blog and you really should be more careful". Yeah, I know. Where's the fun in that.....

Wednesday, September 10, 2008


Tuesday, September 09, 2008

I went to a garden party to reminisce with my old friends...

Saturday Writer and I went to a backyard wedding. It was for the son of one of the teachers I worked closely with at Writers school. It was a great, and very un-traditional, wedding and a testament to good neighbors. The wedding itself was right next door in the neighbor's back yard, the reception in the groom's parent's back yard. Their neighbors opened up their yard and their house for the party, which flowed between the two back yards. It was cool.

The wedding was great, the pastor was in his 20's and the ceremony itself was a well blended cross between traditional ceremony and stand-up comedy. The music at the reception was an exercise in contradiction, from the traditional incredibly romantic choice for the first dance & the dance with the parents (of whose titles I know not), intertwined with songs like the theme song to "Married With Children" and "Every Rose had it's Thorn". The food was great, and, well, they had Corona, need I say more? (Ok, for those of you who don't drink - it's a darn good beer). The company was awesome, it was wonderful to see so many (ok, it was only 5) people I worked with at the old school, and some of the students I taught. The only downer: I learned a lesson on not putting my elbows on the table. Seems there was a bee that was as interested in my food as me, and when I rested my arm on the table he was right below it. Yeah, he was mad, I got stung and now he's dead. But 3 days later my my arm is still swollen, and itches like an SOB. Ah well, it was still quite worth it.

Sunday, September 07, 2008

135 Days left.

And time for more wonderful quotes from out commander-in-chief;
  • Well, I think if you say you're going to do something and don't do it, that's trustworthiness.
  • And I suspect that what you'll see, Toby, is that there will be momentum, momentu will be gathered. Houses will begat jobs, jobs will begat houses.
  • It's totally wiped out...It's devastating - it's got to be doubly devastating on the ground. (from Air Force One above New Orleans)
  • Security is the essential roadblock to acheiving the road map to peace.
  • Too many good docs are getting out of the business. Too many OB-GYNs aren't able to practice their love with women all across the country.
  • You know, one of the hardest parts of my job is to connect Iraq to the war on terror.

Saturday, September 06, 2008

What's the hubub, bub?

There is no way on God's green(ish) earth that I'd vote for Sarah Palin. Partly because what little I know of her politics (conservative, gun-totin', pro-life, anti-gay beauty queen) is completely contrary to my beliefs, but mainly because a vote for McCain (also known as Bush Light) is a vote for 4 more years of the Bush policies of failure.
That said, I now say that I don't give a rats ass if she has a pregnant teenage daughter, regardless of whether the father were sticking with her or disappeared into the Alaskan wilds. Unless she were forcing her daughter to have an abortion, this has absolutlely no bearing on her ability to be Vice-President. You can be the best parent in the world and your teenage daughter might still end up pregnant, hormones do not happen only to the "ill-bred". So, this is my official plea that we hear no more on the subject. Let the news outlets drop it, let the Obama campaign rise above it and not make it an issue, because it isn't. We, as a nation, spend too much energy delving into the personal lives of our celebrities, and that's how we ended up with such pathetic leaders. Move past it and concentrate on the real issues; energy problems, federal deficit and federal debt, ending the war and keeping us out of new ones, restoring the American image in the rest of the world and restoring our economy. I don't know the answers to these problems, but we'll never figure them out if we worry instead about whose daughter is doing what.


Friday, September 05, 2008

Should be standard Prom attire;

Click on it, look closely, you'll get it.

Well, the first two weeks of school are over. I survived. Our enrollment numbers are higher than expected, which, for now, means we have some fairly packed classes. The other day the Head Custodian came in to see if I had any spare desks. At the time I did, and he took 3 for a teacher who had more students than desks. That would have been nice, except since then I've had 5 new students show up. Got 2 of my desks back 2 days ago, now I need 3 more. Last year that wouldn't have been a problem, since each class had 2 or 3 students that just never showed up. Well, our Attendance Dean got a head start this year, has a "No Show" list and has been calling parents and students convincing them to get their butts to school. Four students chose today to be their first day of school. We're still up 30 students from where we expected to be. That means we should have one more teacher working than we do, cramming one extra teacher's worth of kids into all the other classes. But, we just have to wait until October, when we do our final warm-body-count and get our official staffing allowance from the district.

So, the first weeks went pretty well. I really like my Geometry classes. I have some really interesting students in them, but today I had 98% of the class engaged in what we were doing, even in the assignment. Some were working harder than others, but not a single student was avoiding the work all together. Niiiice. Algebra, right before Geometry, not so much. That's the class that had 2 kids show up for the first time, and one that just transferred into it. There was a group of 4 in the back (yes, they will be moved and separated by next class) doing nothing except talking. They did keep it down when I was going over the material, but whenever we had a transition or independent working, they were socializing. Yeah "Earth to dumbasses, if you pass my class now, you just might have an easy Senior year when (and if) you get there." Yeah, try telling that to a generation that's used to making multiple life-and-death decisions in one 20 minute video game. I still have a lot of students in the class that I really like, that are going to prove to be amusing throughout the year, I'm just going to be working at keeping them on task. The good news is that so far there isn't a single student that I wish would disappear off the rolls and out of the school. Can't say that for last year. I did have one major teacher success moment, the first week of school. This one student, a sophomore I think, was giving me the old "Why do we have to work the first week of school" whine right before the second day of class. I looked at him and said "Tell you what, you go out get a job and when you show up for the first day of work tell your boss you're going to just sit in the corner and do nothing because, after all, it is just the first day of work" He gave me a puzzled look and I asked "Do you think you'll still have a job?" He shyly said "No" and sat down and got to work. Yeah! Chalk one up for the Gipper!

On the other hand, the staff can be every bit as annoying as the students. This one counselor for example. She came to us halfway through the year last year, and because of that I forgot to print up a Relicensure Point Certificate for the inservice hours she was there for. Well, when we passed them out at the first faculty meeting and she didn't get one, she came up to me and said (gruffly) "I need to get my points." I apologized to her and told her to eMail me and that I would get them to her as soon as possible. (Note: Relicensure is always in June, so if she didn't need them by June 2008, she won't need them until June of 2009. Not an immediate need). From our conversation she goes over to the principal and tells her to make sure that I don't forget to print her up the certificate. The principal (she's a wise one, she is) tells her to go ahead and let me know, and when the counselor tells her that she already told me the principal says "Well, then don't worry, he'll do it." Nope, she wants the principal to remind me. Ok, fast forward to yesterday, going past several emails and remiders from her, she comes into my classroom first thing in the morning to ask me if I had her certificate done yet. I told her that I had her emails, had even sent in an official district work order to remind me, and that I would get to it as soon as possible. She goes on about needing it, has to get it "off her desk" so she can file it, etc. I try to explain that this is the beginning of the school year and that I have 3 teachers with no computer, a lab that needs Word and a printer installed and several other issues that directly effect student education, and that, frankly, her certificate is not that high a priority. She continues to go on about "getting it off her desk" so I just assure her that I will get to it as soon as possible and shoo her out the door. By lunch I have an eMail from her reminding me of the discussion we had earlier that day and that she needs to (yes, you got it) get this off her desk. Right after school she sticks her head in to ask me if I got her eMail reminding me about the discussion we had at the beginning of the day. If the door had opened into the class instead of out into the hall, I would have slammed it in her face. Well, the part of me that wanted to fight that kind of bullying got the crap beat out of it by the part of me that was willing to do anything to avoid talking to this woman, and I ended up making up her certificate, which has to be signed by the principal, who is going to talk to her about the way she dealt with this (and other things, I'm not the only one) when she gives her the certificate.

So, that was the first couple of weeks. Got a little frustrated over fighting the cellphone thing for a couple days, but just stuck to it and we're doing ok. Been a good couple of weeks, overall. Have some great students, have some good students, have some annoying students. But none that I would like to see disappear. That's success.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008


First two weeks of school tiring? Nah. Zzz

Monday, September 01, 2008

What the hail?

or Good thing it was the day before Labor Day; The tale of 5 hours without power.
It started out a nice warm summer day in the lazy little city on the shores of the Great Salt Lake. Sunny and warm, it was 76F by the time I got my butt out of bed around 9 am, completely oblivious to the drastic changes that would occur in the next 24 hours.

Bleah! I sound like a really pathetic 3rd rate novel. Let's cut to the chase, at 4:30 pm yesterday it was 84F and by 5:30 it had hit 63F (today's high is supposed to be 63F, tomorrow 72F). Welcome to Utah in the fall.

There, now for the full story. Yesterday was a warm day, I had the swamp cooler on cooling down the house, had done a load of dishes, couple of loads of laundry and was working on changing my seating charts. (Kids are idiots, they show me in the first week who needs to be separated from who. If they were just a little more subtle, they could get away with stuff for a lot longer.) Around noon I got a call from one of my old roommates inviting me over for a bbq around 6, which I accepted. Around 2:30 I got a call from my little brother reminding me of an old Ford show that was going on in Park City, suggesting we take a couple of my old Fords up there. I told him I had to be back by 6, but then again so did he so we decided to go. He, his wife and kids and I all headed up there in Old Blue and the Battlecruiser, looking forward to a little relief from the heat. It was beautiful up there. We went through Park City, didn't find the Ford show, went further up the hill a way and then came back. We'd been told that it was in The Canyons (formerly known as Park West, because it's just a few miles west of Park City) on Friday, then in Park City on Saturday, so we decided to see if it had headed back to The Canyons for Sunday. Yo, it was there, right at the foot of the gondola ride up to the resort. By this time it was almost 5:00, but we decided we had enough time to check out the cars, and the kids needed to stretch their legs anyway. We spent a little bit of time looking at the cars, there were some really nice ones, and then decided that since the gondola ride was free, we'd take it for a quick ride, the kids were kind of hinting they wanted to ride it. We rode it right over my cars, got a couple cool pictures from right above them and then the storm that hit SLC hit us. A 20 minute round-trip ride on a gondola seems a lot longer when it's cold and raining, although the ride back was better because we were going with the wind, so the rain wasn't hitting us as hard. And at least it wasn't the worst part of the storm, which hit on the ride down Parley's Canyon. They were in Old Blue and I had The Battlecruiser, so we decided to just part ways and head straight to our respective bbqs, since it was almost 6 already. Well it's about a 30 mile drive from The Canyons to Salt Lake City, most of it along a stretch of I-80 that was recently repaved. Nice, smooth road, but it seems that new pavement has something in it that, when mixed with a heavy rain, comes out of the pavement like a big sheet of frothy soap. It was slick as snot. On a road that I would normally travel between 70 and 80 MPH, I found myself slowing down to 50 MPH at times. Just a wee bit scary, but I made it, although a bit late to the bbq.

The bbq was great, even sat out in the hot tub in the rain. Which was a mistake because it was so relaxing that I was falling asleep by 9 and headed home. I became a little worried about the possibility of no power at my house when I got to the intersection of 13th East and 17th South and the power was out there. No signal lights. Fortunately most of the people there understood the concept of treating it like a 4 way stop, so there was no big confusing mess there, and I made it through the intersection smoothly. That area is actually on a different circuit than my house, so I wasn't positive I was out of power, but having lived here for 15 years, I knew that the probability was high. Yep. Total darkness. Good thing I keep a lantern, with good batteries, in an easily accessible spot. It really wasn't totally dark in the house, the moon must have been out, or the lights from the city were bouncing all off the clouds, because there was enough of an eerie light throughout the house for me to get around easily. (I can make it around the house in total darkness, but a lot slower.) The house was a little warm for sleeping, and I love listening to the rain anyhow, so I went and layed out on the futon on the back porch. I dozed, listening to the rain, traffic and other sounds of the city, until it got too cold and damp and then I moved back into my room. Opened the window up all the way, still listening to the rain and went to sleep. Until the accident out in front of the house. I heard the crash and then the sound of screeching brakes, and thought it was weird, because usually the smash comes after the brakes. So, I got up, went out there to see what had happened, couldn't figure out what exactly had happened but saw enough people walking around to know that they didn't need any assistance. One car was filled with high school aged guys, who were all high 5'ing each other like they had just accomplished some astronomical feat. Um, yeah, You got in a wreck. Cool. They couldn't have been going that fast, the cars weren't that badly damaged, so I don't think it was a "thank God we survived" kind of high-5. Ah, well, whatever. The cops showed up and I went back to bed, just to be woken (is that a word?) up around 2:30 with the sound of air conditioners kicking on at the apartment complex next door. I was really, really glad that this was not a regular night where I had to work in the morning, I would have been too worried about getting up on time (no alarm clock) and getting enough sleep that it would have been really frustrating. Instead I just kind of faded in and out of sleep all night. And woke up to a hail storm this morning. Yup, had to flip on the heat. So, in the last 24 hours I went from a swamp cooler on full throttle cooling down the house to nothing because of no power to heating up the house because it was 50F outside. Yes, I do love living in Utah (and that's not even sarcasm).