Monday, February 15, 2010
Random Notes From The Road
Alas, fans of bicycle-related writing, it's yet another off-topic post. Feel free to shout "Digression!" at me in the comments section (he said, in a lame attempt at a veiled homage to the late, great J.D. Salinger.)
Better Half and I just spent the weekend with my sis, bro-in-law, mom, and the World's Greatest Pair of Nephews (Wacky Wilson and J.T. #2) to celebrate the littlest dude's first birthday. This was the first time we got to see the not-so-tiny one (the younger J.T. eats like his initial-sharing uncle, I kid thee not) getting around on two feet. He is also the LOUDEST happy baby I've ever seen -- imagine noises of contentment as played through a Marshall stack. Elder brother is also more of a hoot every day. It's so much fun to watch the tiny gears grinding as he pieces together almost-3-year-old logic.
I confess, though, the most fun I had was tagging along with my "little" sister (just two years my junior, though she'll always be a third-grader in my head) as she directed her State-bound pep band at a basketball game (this not long after her kids made a KILLER showing at the All-State music festival). It was a proud moment for the older bro watching his all-growed-up sis as a professional educator and the leader of a darn-tight musical ensemble. She's good. Really good. Although she did have a brief lapse in judgment when she let me sit in on bass for Smoke on the Water. I count myself lucky that I was able to start and end at the same time as the rest of the band, and I'm hoping nobody noticed the middle. Let's just say I've gotten a little rusty since the days when she and I went to state with our high school pep band (which can be seen on the periphery during the movie Hoop Dreams -- no, I'm not kidding!)
Better Half and I also got to celebrate Valentine's Day at the Hamburg Inn, a legendary Iowa City greasy spoon. I'd link 'em, but they seem to be addicted to astonishingly annoying Flash, and who needs that? Just ask anyone who's ever been in or around Iowa City -- they'll be able to direct you. Anyway, as non-romantic as Valentine's Day diner food sounds, the Hamburg was the site of our second date way, way back before the turn of the century (we were still using dial-up modems to get on Web 1.0 back then, if you can believe that), so it was a worthy choice for a made-up holiday. After a decade and a half, this amazing woman still hasn't noticed that she's married to a balding gnome-dork -- I think there may be an ongoing problem with her glasses prescription. If you happen to know her in real life, please don't let on.