Thursday, January 28, 2010

It still stinks

After spending a week wallowing in a state of self-pity, I've come to a few conclusions about the Vikings loss in the NFC championship game.

  1. Without Brett Favre the Vikings don't play in the Championship
  2. Brett Favre is, as he was for Green Bay, the Vikings greatest asset and greatest liability
  3. However, Favre did not lose the game, Adrian Peterson did with his fumbles (despite an otherwise great game).
  4. The Vikings should have been able to score at least 13 more points than they did. Those chances were fumbled away.
  5. The Defense was superb... right up until overtime.
  6. Uncatchable balls are uncatchable. How can an uncatchable pass be interfered with.
  7. I don't mind ending sentences with prepositions.
  8. After the lose, I was amazed at how emotionally exhausting it is having a successful sports team.

Monday, January 25, 2010

1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12.... hmmm

When the math gets hard and heavy in General Chemistry, and my students get frustrated, I tell my students that if they can count to 5, they have the math skills needed to handle about 90% of what we cover in Organic Chemistry.

For those of you not into chemistry, carbon can only form 4 bonds. I tell my organic students to count the bonds to carbon and if they get to 5, something is wrong.

My beloved Vikings need something similar to the number 12. Despite all of the stupid mistakes they made last night, they actually had a chance to win the game until they got penalized for having 12 men in the huddle...after a time out!!!!

From now on, they should hire someone who's only job is to count the people on the field. If that person gets to 12, they should alert the coach.

Of course, in the scenario last night, there was nothing they could have done. They can't call back to back time outs. The blame lies squarely on the coaching staff. And then of course, Brett Farve decided to once again dash the hopes of a long suffering fan base by throwing in interception.....

I know, I was going to quit blogging, but this is cathartic.

OK, say with me:

uh oh!!!!!!!!!!!!

Friday, January 22, 2010

Belated birthday to the blog and goodbye?

This blog was born on January 3, 2007. That's three years ago, and I missed its birthday 20 days ago. oops. It is time to reflect on whether I have accomplished what I wanted to with this blog.

In short, No, not really. My posts on the Chemistry of brewing have been few a far between. My problem is that I plan big ambitious posts and never find the time or motivation to finish them. There's something about having 4-5 classes a semester and 4 kids that really sucks the energy from ones being. Don't get me wrong, I love the life I have with 4-5 classes a semester and 4 kids, but it is not conducive to being a good and comprehensive blogger.

I had hoped this blog would be a source of meaningful information regarding the chemistry of brewing. I never quite got there.

On the other hand, I've written a lot about education and teaching. I usually complain about things, but that's not unusual. And regardless of the subject matter, I've been writing. Not well, but writing none the less. If there is one thing that I need to practice it is writing. I've used this blog to force myself to at least try to craft a thought and make it coherent as written words. I know I will never be 'writer' but I never wanted to be. I just want to exercise my brain.

So, were does that leave this blog?

Well, two days ago, I had a conversation with my brain. We have been mulling over the idea of shutter up this little corner of the internet. I came to a decision (this was just two days ago, BTW). I decided that I would continue to blog, albeit sporadically, as long as blog pal Matt Jenks continued to blog on his site, A Crown of Thistles. I thought, if he ever quits, then I'm going to quit. In a sense, I was merely passing the buck on making a decision.

Guess what? He's quitting (sort of).

To be true to my brain, I'm quitting too. Sort of. I plan on taking a bit of a hiatus. Yeah, yeah I know. I seem to have been on hiatus for the past 2 years.

Anywho, I'm not going to post much around here. Even less than I have. Maybe I'll shut it down completely. I'm not sure yet. Maybe I'll get my second wind and find some inspiration.

Until then,

Good bye cruel world

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Wort as a beverage

My wife and I recently took a trip to Puerto Rico. We picked the most perfect time. Minnesota was suffering from record cold temperatures and Puerto Rico was not. It was great.

While in Puerto Rico, I discovered a drink that is very popular in the Caribbean, but I had never heard of before. And it is related to beer.

Malta. No, not the island, the drink.

Malta is essentially wort that has not been fermented. Wort, of course, is what beer is made from. It is made using barley, hops and water. In the case of malta, it is bottled and carbonated.

In Puerto Rico the brand I had was Malta India. It was exactly what anyone who has brewed would expect. It tasted like wort. It was sweet, balanced with a gentle bitterness. It is not a refreshing drink and one that requires an acquired taste. For those unfamiliar with wort, imagine watering down some molasses.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

The legend is true.

OMG, it does exist!!!

I just found my desk.

After I shred a pile of papers, I will have clean (in a very relative sense) desk.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Rain in January

Hey losers freezing your butts off on the continent (USA specifically).

I got rained on in Puerto Rico today while riding bike and I didn't mind a bit. Man, I could live here. After I learn Spanish of course.

My wife and I reckoned neither of us had ever been rained on during January. At least not comfortably.

Those we left behind in MN can enjoy the cold and snow. And to think, there is still another country further north than Minnesota.

Monday, January 4, 2010


Avatar has made a billion dollars and counting.

You would think they could have hired someone to teach Sigourney Weaver how to use an Eppendorf Pipette.

If you've seen it, did you notice? If you haven't, watch for it when they take the trailer to a remote location (you'll know what I mean).

Not to mention that since the film is set in 2154 it seems odd that Eppendorf would not have updated their design for about 160 years.

A little math lesson for you

Where I am:

Where I will be in about 30 hours:

Here's the math (updated to actually be correct) :

83°F – (-23°F) = 105°F difference between the two locales.

After setting two record lows in 2010 (yeah, that's 2 out of 4 days) for my area, I'm ready for a break.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Happy New Year

Happy New Year everyone. I hope 2010 treats you well.

My family and I spent the night at a friends house. I drank some a pale ale that I designed and brewed with my friend. He had it on tap. It was delicious. Almost a bit too cascady (if that is possible).

Of all of the beer I drank during 2009, none of it compares to the beer that Al over at HopTalk drank. He finished 365 days of beer. During 2009 he drank 365 unique beers. Impressive and probably more of a burden than it seems.

Have a great 2010!!!