The intellectual equivalent of a ham sandwich.

Posts tagged ‘galveston’

The End is Near?


I know I should go to a kitschy gift store by the beach and think, “perfect! a motorcycle guy made out of sea shells, riding a motorcycle made out of sea shells! How adorable, and right up my alley!” But instead it just makes me wonder if the end is near. Maybe I should go out less. (Also that look on their faces doesn’t help.)

Running Thoughts, part 1

I am getting back into running long distances as part of my training for the Tough Mudder and, I’ll tell you, it inspires weird thoughts.

I’m not alone in this, as the author of The Oatmeal also described the same thing. Although he is much more popular, runs farther than me, faster than me, and is funnier than me. Classic jerk if you ask me.

This past Sunday I ran 9 miles in Galveston. It was a nice change of scenery from my usual long runs, but there was one problem: the mosquitoes (I have since realized that even where I live the mosquitoes seem to have taken over). The abundance of mosquitoes (and the long distance) took my mind to a weird thought …

I decided that mosquitoes are the world’s most intelligent species. Many years ago they began collecting blood samples from different animals all over the world and studying them. They would bring these samples back to local labs and look to see what animals were best at surviving. A utilitarian species, the mosquitoes (who were not at the time the same mosquitoes as we know them) realized something: they were not fit for survival.

The optimally designed rat finks.

These primitive mosquitoes saw, by their extensive research and studying, that the ideal form for survival was … well, mosquitoes as we know them today. But there came to be a disagreement in the community of mosquitoes. A gathering of all the chief researchers was organized and it did not go as planned. Instead of the group coming together with one optimal design for survival, a schism hit the group.

Each group had definite characteristics that could be noticed. Group A was more outgoing, social, and adventurous. They looked at the design idea for the mosquito and saw perfection.

Group B was more withdrawn. They often preferred to look at their conclusions on their own, in the dark, away from others. This group saw the idea of flying as needlessly dangerous. They presented a second idea. They claimed this would be just as hearty and could withstand anything the first design could withstand, and then some. Group B became … cockroaches.

So there you have it. That’s what I was thinking about while dog tired and staring at this beautiful scenery.

Galveston Texas

Galveston, TX

Parental Visit Recap

My Mom was in town for a visit from a Wednesday (Halloween) to Tuesday, my Dad Thursday to Sunday. Who’s ready for a recap!?! (This post is mostly for me, but it has some entertaining stuff even if you don’t know them.)

Recap Time!

Wednesday night my mom and I went to dinner after I got her from the airport. They had an alligator at the place, in a cage, chilling. Kitschy, but hey, who doesn’t dig a gator? They also had gator on the menu. My mom asked, “wait, real alligator? Or is that a euphemism?” … I have no idea what that would be a euphemism for, but I don’t like the idea of it.

Thursday I worked til an hour or two after my Dad arrived. My Mom had my car so she and my Dad drove to work to get me. We went to Johnson Space Center and did the tour. It’s a staple item on the Houston visit to-do list. Red means serious when it comes to NASA phones

Friday we drove down to Galveston. We had been warned that there was a motorcycle rally in town … but boy, that didn’t do it justice. There were a LOT of motorcycles, and folks in the whole getup. Everywhere we went you heard the sound of motorcycles.

We walked through a street that was closed off for vendors selling motorcycle clothing and such. My Dad said something along the lines of not feeling so out of place since he visited Amsterdam in the 70s (he was either still in college at the United States Military Academy or just out of school … basically, not your average Amsterdam visitor).

Here’s what is really funny. We went into an antique store and my Mom bought a vintage Barbie carrying case (originally I used the word ‘old’ but when Googling for an image of it, ‘vintage’ is what brought me the desired result).
Vintage Barbie Carrying Case at Lone Star Rally

My Mom, Dad, and I went from the antique store to the motorcyclists gathering area on the Strand (a main street in Galveston). Bikes everywhere, guys and girls with leather on everywhere. I suggested that my Mom step in front of a bunch of bikes and pose with her Barbie carrying case. She obliged. A big tough guy looked over at us, saw the case, and smirked. Three women who were motorcycle ladies, sitting on the ground by us, noticed what was happening. I don’t remember the exact conversation, but in turn each of the women seemed to realize they had owned the same carrying case when they were little girls and they also loved it.

I really regret not asking them to pose for a picture with the case. The worst part of it is that they would’ve been cool with it, too. For all the gruff exterior, the motorcyclists we ran across were a bunch of sweethearts. Yes, I said it, sweethearts.

Saturday was a big day. We headed into town and split ways. My Mom, for the irony factor and her love of quilting (check out the quilt she made for me!), went to the International Quilt Festival (last year’s attendance was over 60,000!! Holy cow!). Houston International Quilt Festival

Meanwhile my Dad and I headed to a sports bar to watch Army beat Air Force (what’s up!), and I read some homework (booorrrrinnnggggg). We linked up with my Mom around 6 pm to go to the Rockets home opener! Unfortunately the Rockets lost but the crowd was good, and the game was entertaining.

That guy has a foam finger for a head

Sunday saw my Dad’s departure. But before that we headed to a few more shops. My Mom tried to get me to explain hipsters, but I did not have the answer. I honestly don’t know how to explain why someone would wear suspenders, but then take the time to work on their hair only to make it look like they had just woken up. You tell me, suspenders-wearing guy.

After my Dad hopped on an airplane, my Mom and I headed to more shops. It was … exciting.

Monday I went in for about a 3/4 long day, then … you guessed it, shopping. We capped the night off with a nice dinner and a bit of TV on my dearest friend, my couch. I’ll admit, I now own two new, nice sweaters.

Tuesday my Mom headed home.

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