Olympic Tech: Shoes.

I've had a fascination with high-performance footwear (i.e. gym shoes) since I was a little kid. I think it stems, at least in part, from the fact that for most of my childhood, all us kids could only pick one kind of gym shoes brand - Winner IIs from Sears & Roebuck (back when they still used "Roebuck" too). Our family got a pretty sweet discount on already low prices, so it was a no-brainer. Of course, as soon as I could buy my own kicks, I was all about doing whatever it took to be sporting something other than Winner IIs.

I've been seeing a bit more coverage in general for the Olympics, now that we're only a couple weeks out, and I notice the shoes pretty easily, here's a sample:

This is *the* shoe to have if you're going to be boxing this Olympics. As I understand it, boxers are mostly on their midfoot and toes, so that's where the bulk of the support and padding is needed/located in this shoe. Once that's sorted, they make the rest of it as light as possible. You can basically see through the shoe, as it uses losts of high strength mesh, which also keeps the feet cooler during the pummelings. (lightweight is a theme in almost any high performance item, be it shoe or otherwise)

Next up, the crowd-pleasing sport - ping ping! No joke, though in fairness it's known as 'table tennis' in the Olympics. Also, if you've ever seen the sport (usually only on TV during the Games), it's pretty hardcore. So, these shoes, again from Adidas (All Day I Dream About...), are part of their "ClimaCool" series. Same kind of venting/mesh as the boxing shoes, to keep feet-heat low.

Ah, did you think I would forget basketball? Did you know that one of the biggest brands in basketball and for Nike is Lebron James? He's had his own signature shoe for about 5 years. This is the Lebron V in what I can only presume is the Olympic 'colorway'. I believe two players on the team have also guaranteed a gold medal for the US... good luck.

Finally, I've saved what I thought was the coolest new shoe for the games, used in track & field. Middle distance track to be specific. This is from a new series at Nike called "Flywire". This is the 'Nike Zoom Victory Spike', an intended track shoe that should weigh about 95grams or .2lbs. It's the lightest shoe they, or I believe anyone, has produced for this sport. Joe Schmoe should be able to pick this up in October, but each Nike athlete at the games will get two pairs.

Oh, all the other shoes are available for purchase by Joe Bagadonuts too... but bring lots of cash for the best. The lighter it is, the more it costs.

Lastly, if you need more tech, here's a "fancy schmancy" article on 7 new Olympic shoes.


Never Back Down.

I'm thinking of this phrase for my first tattoo, kind of a personal mantra that I've taken up in the past week. What do you think, old English script down my lower right arm or left arm? It might have something to do with the DVD release of the movie with the same title, here. Looks like a good movie, right? I might have to NetFlix it this week and "knock it out".


2 new plates for the Vanity Plate Review Board.

Time for some more questionable driving in order to shoot some more questionable vanity plates:

Yeah, the Irish are really proud of their parent's parent's heritage. It's not even close to St. Patty's Day... but it's always Irish-pride in their license plate. Perhaps this driver is also an ophthalmologist... combining eyes and the Irish.

And who doesn't like a good emphatic "ZINGG", with a "5" on the end. Perhaps this tells us that it's part of the Zingg family of autos and this is #5 in the series?


Discuss, Poll #28, Housing.

Tell me all the dirty details about your housing situation. I dare you.

Results, Poll #27, Batman.

So, the biggest weekend movie for a single film opening ever! And, it was also the movie industry's biggest weekend in history with all theater receipts totaling almost a quarter billion dollars. Not too bad in this economy.

> 5 people (29%) chose "I seen it" - I now have to include myself, so the response is more like 6. Pretty good movie overall, def a summer blockbuster.
> 9 people (52%) chose "It's high on the list" - GO! Don't run, but walk to the theater.
> 4 people (23%) chose "Nah, I'll rent it" - ok, if you think you can wait that long, and be the only on on your block that hasn't seen it...
> 2 people (11%) chose "Who's Batman?" - I'm not sure what to say to this, but Adam West, Michael Keaton, Val Kilmer, Christian Bale and whoever else I'm forgetting would be upset.

Pretty good amount of respondents (unless someone didn't remove their multiple votes?) and a darn good movie. I voted earlier in the week and then saw the movie on Friday. The theater was like an icebox, but what person living in an un-airconditioned apartment on the 4th floor would complain? Not I.

Next poll and discussion locked and loaded.



Who needs new camping gear!?!
Well, I've had one of the t.c models head over to the local REI and check out some gear for the blog, enjoy.

"Howdy, Partner. You need a new hat?"

"I think this backpack *might* be a bit big on me... but I'm sure it'll fit you fine."

"You're in luck, you *can* get your new kayak in powder blue!"

"They got tents out the ying-yang."

"You can get a rock-climbing helmet to match your shirt... maybe it'll match the kayak too."

"Don't forget the importance of proper rest when camping. You'll need your energy."


More waitress tats.

I've yet to find a tattooed person that won't gladly lift their shirt or stop what they're doing to show you their ink, I kind of enjoy asking...

We started with the most visible on her foot, ooh, a birdie!

We then wound up lifting her shirt up in back to see this beauty, awww, a fairy. Tattoo tough?



If you ever get the chance to visit Frances' Deli on Clark street in Chicago, make sure you take advantage. Not only do they serve (with difficulty at times) a great spread of traditional brunch foods, think great French toast and wonderful eggs, but they also make their own, fresh sausage patties. I don't think I know of another place in Chicago that can claim that... least that I've been to. You can also get traditional deli sandwiches like corned beef and pastrami. And to top all that off, Vince Vaughn loves it.


Discuss, Poll #27, Batman.

Discuss here if you want... and if you saw 'Dark Knight' already, a review would be a nice comment post. I'm thinking of hitting it during the day this week... I have some spare time.

Results, Poll #26, Technology.

These results were posted a bit later than normal, let's jump right in:

> 1 person (7%) chose "better than ever" - Maybe you have some tips for everyone or had a bad case of agoraphobia?
> 10 people (71%) chose "meh, about the same" - I'm with everyone here... though somewhat leaning to the next choice. I also had a major error this week, I don't think I voted. Maybe something else was on my mind, possibly, maybe?
> 3 people (21%) chose "so much worse now" - Again, some days I'm leaning towards this choice too. Wouldn't it be nice just to see everyone you like in person? And this is coming from someone that tends to his own blog.
> 0 people (0%, duh) chose "i'm converting to orthodox judaism" - Now, this might have looked like a funny choice (though maybe not too funny according to the vote total), but seriously, think about it. I've lived in many semi-Jewish neighborhoods, where every sabbath you see some walking to and from temple or shopping without cars. They also can choose to not read or listen to most mainstream media. Do you think they're getting into car accidents after being distracted on the cellphone - I don't think so. Do they simply Facebook all their family and friends, I don't think so. They see their immediate and extended family and friends, probably on a weekly basis. Of course, converting for a non-Jewish person would be kind of extreme, but so is carpal tunnel syndrome due to playing too much video games.

Was that soapboxy? Well, get over it.


A thing I found in MKE.

I don't know what this is, but it looks pretty cool and because it's shiny, I was attracted to it.
Technically, I think it's just sculpture. It has some engraved words on the side of it, probably an explanation, but soooo many of them that I didn't want to read all of it. The best part is that this is only about 5 minutes from my place, so I can see it almost anytime I want. Yay for me. I suppose little kids, or someone like
me, would want to climb all over it... but then get yelled at by some "adult" for defacing art. Lame.


Dumbest Vanity Plate Ever?

I didn't think the plates could get much worse after "BAADBOY", but I should never underestimate the American public. How's this for silly, odd, and downright confusing vanity plate madness?

First off, if my name was George, I'd be embarrassed, pissed, or a mix of emotions that would rival gorging myself on
Cakesters. Second, does this car belong to a man, woman, or someone like Pat ["...a guy or a girl, a he or a she, who's that? it's pat"]. And finally, what in the world would push someone to fill out the vanity form with their first name, or a derivation there of? I mean, honestly, is that the best you could come up with as you stared at the form!?! "Hmmmm, I'm laying out an extra $100, so I think it should be meaningful... I know, "GEORGEE". That's it! That's the one!!! Thank the Lord it fits on the plate too, phew!"

Yikes. It would have been rejected by the WI Vanity Plate Review Board, that's for sure.


Have a little Hart.

Disclaimer: this is NOT a Cubs vs. Brewers post... I'm going to let the teams settle that at the end of September.

This is however a post of, IMO, bad form. Upon hearing that Brewers' outfielder Corey Hart was voted onto the All-Star team, his teammates decided to shower him with beer during his press conference. Not a bad idea, until you see who he's holding on his lap.

> http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x6371f_corey-hart_latino

I know there's been some news coverage of this shower, but Corey has commented that,
"I went and got her a popsicle, and she was great.". Hmmm, sounds like a line every dad uses when his wife is pissed at him. Then again, the press conference was a surprise to Corey and the teammates didn't know his 2 year old daughter would be in there either.
> http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20080711&content_id=3114110&vkey=allstar2008&fext=.jsp


Discuss, Poll #26, Technology.

Again, a spot for discussion comments.

Also, feel free to check out this post on the topic, hopefully AFTER you've voted.

Results, Poll #25, TV.

I've heard interesting names for the TV, like "idiot box", "boob tube", etc. These are somewhat derisive names that have come about, I suspect, only with the last couple generations that have become "couch potatoes" (another derogatory name) in front of the TV all day long. I mean, who could miss an episode of He-Man, GI Joe, or someone getting slimed on Double Dare. "When I was a kid"... we were generally only allowed one half hour of TV during the day (for all of us, not per kid), prime time during the school week from 7-bedtime (which was about 8:30PM as a middle schooler), some Saturday morning shows before choretime, and maybe a late night on the weekends (though not SNL when I wasn't yet a teenager). All of this plays a role into me watching more TV now as an "adult" - what did everyone else vote:

> 12 people(75%) chose that they watch more TV now then than as a kid - good news for local cable companies and I suspect a good reason why we now have some "Super Stations" on the dial. But, it is the best way for me to see the Cubs' games on WGN.
> 4 people (25%) chose that they watch less TV now than as a kid - that's good news... unless you used to have your mom serve your meals to you in front of Growing Pains and now, simply by the fact that you have to work for a living, you can't watch as much.

No one voted for "about the same" or "don't own a TV". I guess that goes to show how much inroads in the idiot box has made in a few short generations.

Thanks for voting and new poll and discussion up now. I gotta go catch the Tour coverage...


Flight of the Poofey Hair.

On the recommendation of a friend, I netflixed and watched the first 6 episodes of Flight of the Conchords the other day. If you haven't seen it, or to refresh your memeory, in one of the episodes Bret (which always sounds like "Brit") talks about construcitng his "hair helmet". This is a bicycle helmet that looks just like a poofey head of hair. You get to see it in the episode and it does look realistic. Of course, this is all b/c they live in trendy NYC (probably Park Slope or something) and won't be cool if they are seen wearing a helmet on their vintage Schwinns.

After watching the shows, I went to my favorite daytime haunt, Alterra (on the Lake). There, I found this man:
I thought he was wearing his own, very well done, hair helmet... but I was mistaken. It's simply one of the finest, poofey hair, semi-mullets I've ever seen. I think he ordered a smoothie too. Figures.


Future Olympian?

Many of you may have noticed that I post very few pictures of myself, family, or friends. Again, this is to keep the stalking to a minimum, but every now and again, I just can't help myself. Though this year's summer Olympics promise to send a barrage of internet, network, and news coverage (beginning on 8.8.08), I thought this young lady might be on the US Team in 2020, when she'll be a still-quite-young 15 years old.

This scene is real and has not been fashioned to fool anyone. The photo has not been doctored. The simple truth is that this 3 year old has more upper body strength than most of the thirty-something guys I know. She randomly started dipping, then proceeded to pose for the camera many times, and kept doing them after I put the camera away. Must have been 18-24 all tolled. She's a champ.


Discuss, Poll #25, TV.

I thought a post just to post comments about the current poll might help us have some more fun. Please post comments about TV watching here.

Results, Poll #24, Gas.

Ah, gas. Since t.c tries very hard to reflect the sentiment of the American public, I thought a poll on gas would be timely. I also saw that another blogger posted one and I copied the idea. But anyways, let's get to the results -

> 0 people chose $5 - sorry Lincoln.
> 2 people (12%) chose $6 - I'd love to hear the theory on this pricing?
> 1 person (6%) chose $7 - ok, I guess that's getting pretty high. You must have recalculated your monthly budget and determined this is the price where you have to cut back on gas.
> 2 people (12%) chose $8+ - well, I'd like to get put in your will so I might get some of your trust fund, Moneybags. Or, perhaps I should be asking to carpool with you in your Prius.
> 11 people (68%) chose "Buddy, I'm already there" - yeah, I hear you. I wasn't quite sure what to pick myself since I'm only now in my first automobile... but I do know that I park my truck on the weekends when I can (sometimes even when I can't). I've also been trying to ride into work when the weather cooperates. I suspect this is what most people, at least from the poll results, have been doing too. If anyone has some good gas saving or driving tips, please post them in the post comments.

16 respondents this week, thanks. New poll up now, and discussion post for the new poll added this week. Use it or loose it!!!


Gas prices are high?

Here's what many common liquids would be per gallon. I think some of the pricing is dated (everything's going up now), but you get the idea.

Clorox bleach $2.20 > lowfat milk $3.79 > Carlo Rossi blush wine $5.65 (go box-O) > Evian spring water $6.40 > Budweiser $8.88 > Windex $10.21 > Hershey's chocolate syrup $13.23 > latex house paint $16.50 > Jamba Juice $21.82 > Liquid Nails $24.02 > Red Bull energy drink $30.69 (who doesn't love Red-vodkas?) > Head & Shoulders shampoo $37.74 > Absolut Vodka $58.26 (maybe no more Red-vodkas now...) > Renu contact lens solution $82.03 > Tabasco $94.46 > fresh squeezed wheat grass $124.80 (do lawn clippings work?) > vanilla extract $127.84 > Liquid Paper $198.40 > Punky Colour hair dye $327.31 > patchouli oil $806.40 > black ink from an ink cartridge $2,701.52 > Chanel No.5 perfume $25,600.00 (but it works better than Axe Body Spray)

Maybe $4 just seems high for us since gas has been so cheap for so long. I think it's been about $9/gallon in Europe for many many years. I guess everything's relative.



Sure, those entertainment shows and magazines put up any and all mugshots now-a-days, but I bet I found some mugshots at a local bar called Rascals [note their website is suspended] that you haven't seen before. The bar has them hanging on the walls all over the joint. It's pretty funny at the beginning of the night, but kind of scary as the night moves on (and you drink more). It's like they're watching you...

Let's start off BIG, with Larry King:

He looks like my uncle, from the 70's.

Next, a fine actress, Brett Butler:
Looks like she's been kissing a cactus. Who hasn't after some tequila shots!?!

Now, everyone's favorite sitcom handyman, Tim, the ToolMan, Taylor!!!
Busted for nose candy in Kalamazoo, MI of all places. Sweet 'stache!

Last but not least, the world's Hemp Hero, Woody Harrelson:

Was he in "
Disorderlies"? And can "Woody" be his real name!?!

Finally, and I'm not proud of it, to try to combat this barrage of eyes that seemed to keep following me around the bar, I also tried this for the first time...

Kind of interesting. [sssssppppiiiiiitttt!!!]


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