Sitting in the Dark

Every Tuesday and Thursday at 4:00 it seems that court is adjourned. This fact would mean little to me expect that the courtroom is now in my office. They have stored my coworker Evan and I down in the far end of the building. We are now housed in the old youth center, which we shared with the senior citizens on Tuesday’s and Thursday’s mornings. The youth center is a 2,000 square foot room with an accordion wall separating our side (the old computer lab) from those areas frequented by the rest of the world. We have been down here since January, out of sight and out of mind. Not much happens out here in the antipodes. That is except for Tuesday’s and Thursday’s, it used to be that at 9 o’clock a bevy of old ladies would descend outside our office and exercise ~ sort of.

This “exercise” would consist of talking, listening to Dean Martin, Tommy Dorsey, sometimes the Righteous Brothers, while walking in circles twirling your hands, after an exhausting hour of this, all would become quite, except for broken, labored breathing. Stepping beyond the veil, past the accordion wall, one would be greeted one of the funniest sights to be seen in City Hall. This group of grandmothers, valiantly trying to do wall sits. I don’t know if you are familiar with this particular form of self abuse dear reader. I’m sure that your mind, being pure as the driven snow, would never – could never, conceive such an activity. The wall sit is where the victim is made to place his or her back flat against a wall or other broad vertical surface, sliding down said surface until his or her thighs run parallel to the floor, then they are forced to maintain this naturally untenable position for as long as they possible can. Cruel, I know. Yet the sight of 7 old ladies just utterly exhausted, totally spent, desperately trying to hold themselves up against the wall, is so . . . . so . . . . . . . absolutely funny, that it takes all my strength not to laugh I pass by.

But I’m getting sidetracked, this entry is about sitting in the dark not about geriatric exercise routines. But to tell you why I’m sitting in the dark I need to tell you about a leaky parking garage. The parking garage beneath city hall leaks, dripping mineral deposits on cars, all while weakening the substructure. To fix this problem a waterproof membrane is being place down over the parking garage, and pavers are being installed over this. All in all a noisy process, so noisy that court which usually meets downstairs on Tuesday’s and Thursday’s had to be moved to the Youth Center. We were not consulted in this, the idea of walking thru court to get to ones office is . . . . . well . . . . . you try it for a month and tell me. You might think that having court in your office would be entertaining, that you could sit in the back and hold up signs, giving your verdict. It’s not. It is boring. I show up for work at 8, and all ready there are people there. At 8:30 the lawyers show up to defend anyone that needs a lawyer. Some are cool some are slimy. Then at 9 the judge comes in, here is where you think that the fun would start – no. Its just boring, the judge mumbles, the defendants mumble, the lawyers mumble. Me and my coworker whisper. We all keep this up for a few hours – the whispering and mumbling till court is adjourned. The defendants leave, the judge leaves, the clerk tides up and on the way out - at four - without fail, turns off the lights, plunging Evan and myself into Egyptian-like darkness.


Well that was quick. . . . .

Not even a week!

This is way too much fun to stop now.

I've got way to much to say to keep my mouth shut till I've gotten a new camera.

I've got to much going on to blog this weekend however, a date with a wonderful women, driving back across the state, getting ready for being a TCL counselor up at Lakeside for three weeks, my taxes!!!!! (I filled an extension), helping replace a timing belt, all while trying to keep my head above water.

Back in a few days


Signing off for a few months. . . . .

My camera died.

I am sort of sad.

But I got good pictures, and now can get a better camera . . .

. . . . . . . . . someday

A few days ago I found an amazing deal on a Canon G9, 283 dollars. I bought it only to find out that it was a scam, only when they called me asking to verify my shipping address, and started trying to sell me a battery, a charger, and a version of the camera that had English and not Japanese menu's did I realize that I did not want to be doing business with these people. I buy stuff online all the time, and the sight did not set off any real radar. I did some digging after canceling my order and found out that they have a great history of this sort of bait and switch. I canceled the order with them, which was surprisingly easy. This ease worried me, so I called the bank putting a stop on the charge if it should still come thru, canceled the card, and ordered identity protection. All in all it cost me 50 bucks to not buy this camera.

So I'm waiting till the two new Canon DSLR's announced earlier this month to hit the market. Hopefully their presence will drop other older DSLR's into my price range. So it will probably be mid to late September before any pictures show up after today's post. Which makes me sad, this blog has been so much fun, in a few months it's gone from a small blog that I only I look to something bigger than I thought it could ever be. How big? Let me tell you how much you people visit.

I installed Google Analytics's internet traffic analyzing software a few months ago and it lets me see the number of visits, their duration, the number of page views, the countries and city's people visit from. No names, nothing personal, just interesting numbers.

For instance:
24% of visitors click on a Facebook link to get to here.
The 11 pm is when most of you visit.
But the people who visit at 2 in the morning stay the longest, three times longer than the average.
In the last three months over 1,200 of you from 29 countries, and 168 city's have logged 2,890 page views. Generating a view time of 8,814 minutes, stop trying to do the math - it works out to a little more than 6 days of face time!

!You people are great!

Seattle accounts for 24% of the sites, which is not odd as I grew up in the Seattle area, no what is odd is that Hayden makes up 12.8% of site traffic, and is the third most visiting city! Apparently I've got a friendly stalker in Hayden (at least I hope you are friendly) I say stalker because I don't even visit the blog 12 times a day, like you did on . . . . . let me check . . . . June 17th.

You've visited a lot Hayden stalker - and yet you never write - you make me sad.
Just kidding! I'm glad that somebody likes this stuff.

What other weird trends do your fellow viewers exhibit?
Well I can tell you are an awesome, savvy, and smart crowd, 68% of you use Firefox - give yourselves a big hand. 1% are using Safari, and sadly a little over 30% of you are still stuck with IE. There is even the lone Opera user! 96% of you are on a windows based systems, 4% are on Mac's and there are three of you Linux users.

Google has translated the blog into over 17 languages, which I don't pretend to understand how that works, or how it even looks.

The busiest day was May 1st with 112 visits, the slowest was May 10th with 3 visits. On May 24th you averaged 14 minuets per visit. Most of you have visited between 9 and 14 times, 29 of you have visited over 50 times. Hayden stalker - you are at 150 :)

You dear reader have visited some posts more than others, "What is Love" appears to be your favorite, followed by "Morning on Moscow Mountain" and "Another Walk Home"

Because of you, people who type "hike moscow mountain" into Google looking, not for pictures of my nostrils, but rather a more wholesome form of entertainment are being sent to this blog, and when I last checked it was the 9th hit from the top.

Seeing all this growth I took the time to register the site with Alexa, registration is free - if you have a blog do it - its lots of fun to see the numbers. Alexa is the company that ranks websites globally, you dear readers have driven this blog up from a global ranking of 10,658,965th to - at the time of writing 1,525,039th!!!

I need to thank those of you who have taken the time to comment on the blog -


Unless you have a blog you have no idea, just how encouraging commenting can be, my favorite posters in no particular order are:

James - Thank for all the encouragement, you were the first to write and that means a lot!
Lance - I love you man! I have much more to say and will have to come and visit.
Caleb - You crack me up, I really enjoy your blog, keep at it
Shane - You were not afraid to leave a real comment, I poured myself into that post, and really appreciated your response
Lorna - Sister - you are fresh breeze in my life, thank you so much!
Sarah - Your comments tend to inspire, I hope you realize that.

~ Thank You


The NK Ruben Rank

I love Ruben's.

That ideal, wonderful blend of marble rye, sauerkraut, Thousand Island dressing, Corned Beef, and Swiss cheese, grilled to perfection is hard to beat. The Palouse has many offerings in this respect, some are definitely better than others. I had thought for quite some time of trying all the Rubens in the area and somehow ranking them. When sharing this idea with some friends I was surprised to find Ruben fans among them. We decided that we would seek out all Rubens in the area and subject them to our discerning palettes.

To that end after eating our first Ruben of the season we sat down and developed a 17 point scale. A Ruben rubric if you will. Sitting at Bucer's we hammered out the details, it took considerable time, for this was no small time. Self appointed food critics that we were, delivering summary judgments on Rubens was a matter that we approached with the utmost seriousness.

We decided that there would be 17 points, that we would each have half a vote for each point. For a given category we could vote a 0, or .25, or a .5. 0 would mean that the Ruben totally failed to meet our standards, .25 means that it was ok, not great not bad, and .5 means that we were pleased with the Ruben.

So what are the 17 points that make up the NK Ruben Rank?


~Type Is it a Marble Rye?

~Toastedness Is it crunchy/crispy?


~Texture Does it have a pleasant texture?

~Thickness Is it too thick? Too thin?

~Tenderness Is it tender? Chewy?


~Tartness You should know that there is kraut on the sandwich

~Moisture Was it drained? Is it making the sandwich soggy?


~Consistency Is it melted? Is it too melted?

~Sharpness There should be a bite to the cheese


~Tanginess Again you should be aware of the sauce

~Viscosity Too thick? Or more likely - too thing?


~Ingredient ratio Is there ingredient harmony?

~Appearance Does it look good?

~Greasiness Am I wiping my hands on my jeans? (1 = good 0 = bad)

~Size Am I full?

~Originality Did they do the original justice?

~Experience Do I want to go thru this experience again?

So that having been said here is our first NK Ruben Rank

Coeur d’Alene Brewery ~ Moscow, ID


Type = 1

Toastedness = .5


Texture = 1

Thickness = 1

Tenderness = 1


Tartness = .25

Moisture = .5


Consistency = .5

Sharpness = 0


Tanginess = 0

Viscosity = 1


Ingredient ratio = .5

Appearance = .5

Greasiness = 1

Size = 1

Originality = 0

Experience = .5

Total Score:

10.25/17 = 60%

That having been said – it was a good Ruben, we have high standards and stand by them, lots of room for improvement at CDA Brewery, but not a bad Ruben, they defiantly have something worth developing and refining.


Sudden Unplanned Epicness

It was Thursday night, and we were bored, dangeroulsy bored. The sort of boredom that leads to news reports, judicial inquiry's, and elevated serotonin levels (I don't really know what that means but it sounds so . . . . . cool) So we decided that we would canoing, we did not know where, we did not have a canoe, we were lacking adequate transport. But we were going to have and EPIC adventure. Asking the Furb for some fatherly advice we were pointed east to Montana, the land of beard combs and questionable open container laws, with a plan of floating down the Clark Fork from St. Regis to Plains, thirty miles in all. We did not get on the river till two or three in the afternoon, but it was high and flowing fast so we made really good time.

The car and canoe of friends, I wish the canoe was mine, the car - well its a nice car but it is a little heavily scented

Remember how I said it's not my car. . .

Part of me was glad that people thought we were from Idaho

There is something about Montana that I love, or at least those parts of it I have seen, namely the Clark Fork River. I'm still trying to figure out what it is.

The trip was great, I took to many pictures, over 40 minutest of video, and killed my camera.
Between sandy beaches, and white water rapids it made the great change.

If you are ever in Plains Montana, stay till Sunday, and on Sunday morning head over to the Plains Bible Chapel, Joel Banham is the pastor there, try to do more listening than talking, which can be hard, because Joel is a great listener. There are deep wells in Plains.

The last time I was in Plains I apparently made a lasting impression. I had quoted some lines form a novel/movie the title of which I won't write here - if you think you know well you probably are right. Joel had the same sort of breezy familiarity that I did with the work in question, and we proceeded to have a quote off of sorts. All in all I think I saw the man, and his for 15 hour tops that weekend. Fast forward 9 months when I show up in the sanctuary unannounced, and whereupon seeing me his wife says "Oh I remember you - you're the sensitive one" Really??? That's my claim to fame??? Oh well - I'd be lying if I tried to pretend that I did not get a huge kick out of such a title. We had lunch in a great little diner Benji's - which I whole heartily recommend, great little place. Their pepper jack burger is especially good.

The video is still being processed so come back if you care to see it.

Looking for eye gunk
I ended up leaving my contacts in for two days straight. I had no mirror, so used the camera instead - please ignore the uni-brow


Summer Lunch Breaks

Tell me, do you have summer lunch breaks like this?

I was going to pick some flowers, but I was unsure what to do with them

Todays lunch break - I forgot that I was going to get ice cream with friends, and instead went to the U-Pick place, standing up some very good people, and not even getting flowers in the end!

So instead I just took pictures

We had a lot of rain, and it kind of was hard on some things