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Recent Comments

Date Title Body
03/08/2018 - 6:51pm I have parked in both the SC

I have parked in both the SC lots and at Pioneer.  The walk from the SC lots to the NE entrance of Crisler is almost identical in distance to the walk from the Pioneer lot to the SW entrance.  The Pioneer lot is easier to get out of after the game, especially if you take the back exit onto 7th St.  Given the choice, I would also rather give my $10 to the AAPS.

More often than not, I park a bit farther away for free.  The Univeristy lots north and east of Hoover and Greene often have free spaces 30 to 40 minutes before a game.  The lot behind the Sports Coliseum always has free spaces and it is only a half mile walk.

02/20/2018 - 6:44pm I was at the performance of

I was at the performance of Porgy and Bess on Saturday as well.  I'll echo previous comments - it was long (4 hours including two intermissions) but amazing.  The soloists, Porgy and Serena especially, were wonderful.  Morris Robinson's (Porgy) voice was phenomenal throughout and Karen Slack's solo for My Man's Gone Now was heartbreaking. Six Simultaneous Prayers, which apparently was removed in most previous versions, was a highlight.

For the OP and others who are really into Gershwin, the program notes provided by UMS are very thorough.  You can download them at: https://ums.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/0043-0344-porgy-and-bess-program-book-single-pgs-180208.pdf

You can also visit the UMS page about the show at: https://ums.org/performance/george-gershwins-porgy-and-bess/

Finally, I'll also put in a big plug for the University Musical Society, which has is one of the top presenters of music, dance, and drama in the country.  I can't say enough about some of the memorable performances I seen just this year, including the homegrown 139th annual performance of Messiah, two of three performances by the New York Philharmonic, recitals by Joshua Bell and Emmanuel Pahud, and an amazing one man play about depression called Every Brilliant Thing.  If you live in the area and have never been to a UMS event, you are missing one of the crown jewels of the University. 

02/09/2018 - 11:53am 1. The Victors.2. Just about

1. The Victors.

2. Just about anything else played by the Marching Band.

Seriously, why do you need anything else?

01/30/2017 - 1:24pm Yes, I skipped my own

Yes, I skipped my own graduation in the stadium and just went to my department ceremony and reception for exactly that reason.  But since then, I have attended a lot of other similar graduations at large universities and have learned to appreciate the atmosphere of a very large group of people celebrating a very happy occasion.  Attending graduations of the children of siblings has become a tradition in our extended family.  But to be completely honest, the biggest event for all of us that weekend is my son's commissioning ceremony.

01/30/2017 - 9:40am Thanks for alll the

Thanks for alll the suggestions!

01/23/2017 - 11:47pm The owners of Kana passed the

The owners of Kana passed the business along to their sons, who moved it to West Liberty and turned it into Pacific Rim - a high-end Asian fusion place.  I've had some great meals there but it is very different that the original Kana.

12/10/2016 - 8:12am I have been a season ticket

I have been a season ticket holder for 26 years minus a one-year break during the Brandon years.  Ticket price increases, including the seat license fee added by Brandon, are probably the biggest factor in the drop in attendance.  I was one of those fans who was unwilling to pay 2-4 times a much for tickets when Brandon decided to gouge us.  Now I am sitting at the top of the upper bowl looking at a half-full lower bowl and wondering why the Athletic Department hasn't done anything to repair the damage they did to long-time fan loyalty.

08/18/2016 - 1:55pm Huron High, not Ypsi

Cindy Ofili went to Huron High in Ann Arbor.  I remember seeing her in HS meets when my son ran for Skyline.

09/24/2015 - 9:35pm These are also great

These are also great marinated in teriyaki sauce for an hour before grilling.  If you don't have time to make the sauce, use Soy Vay Island Teriyaki for a savory-sweet taste or Kikkoman Spicy Miso Teriyaki for something with a bit more kick.  This is one of the easiest, quickest, and tastiest things you can grill.

09/21/2015 - 10:18pm I am pretty sure it was also

I am pretty sure it was also a massage parlor for part of the time between Bo's and Seoul Garden.  That incarnation was closed during a big crackdown on massage parlors in Ann Arbor in the '90s.

Regarding the earlier comment about how unsuccessful restaurants in that area have been, Seoul Garden has been the exception.  I think it was the first place in southeast Michigan to serve Koren BBQ.  I haven't been there in years, but I remember some great meals there.

09/13/2015 - 2:47pm Absolutely true.  I don't

Absolutely true.  I don't understand either why people look down on agriculture as a legitimate area of academic study.  Is it because it is too "practical"?  If that's your reason, how is it different from engineering?  Or is it because people look down on farming as a profession?  If that's your reason, maybe you should trying growing all of your own food for awhile.

06/11/2015 - 8:46am I am a huge fan of the books

I am a huge fan of the books - read through the whole series three times.  Great writing!

02/08/2015 - 7:43pm I'll add another vote for

I'll add another vote for Logan.  Had dinner for 6 there this Friday and everything was great.  I think it is the best high end, white tablecloth place in town right now.

10/17/2014 - 6:45pm If I remember correctly,

If I remember correctly, Manny Harris got an injury that nagged him for a substantial part of the season the one time Beilein had a Midnight Madness practice.

The lack of a Midnight Madness practice never bothered me.  Save the hype for the games.

09/12/2014 - 8:43pm Jasper - I went to your web

Jasper - I went to your web site - very nice photographs!!  I am envious.

09/12/2014 - 8:38pm Thanks for the comments and

Thanks for the comments and advice.  With the "no bags" rule I will leave my 300mm at home, just take my 18-200 on the camera, and hope I don't end up having to walk back to my car to drop it off.

09/05/2014 - 6:09pm Why stop at one?  After the

Why stop at one?  After the first one, additional ones are easy.  And sometimes they keep each other busy so you can get other things done.

09/05/2014 - 3:43pm As a parent of premie twins,

As a parent of premie twins, I can relate.  Serious sleep deprivation for about 6 months.  It does get better - mine graduated from college this year.

09/05/2014 - 2:44pm Congratulations!  Welcome to

Congratulations!  Welcome to life's greatest adventure.

My advice regarding your questions:

1) Remember that your family is more important than your fandom.  There will be times when the right decision is to record the game and watch it later

2) Rather than focusing on indoctrination, teach her to be a good fan.  When it comes time for college, if Columbus or some other place is best for her, give her your love and support.  You don't have to root for her school, but you do have to root for her.

05/17/2014 - 10:29pm I'm not sure why it matters

I'm not sure why it matters that he isn't an alum.  It is an administrative position, with job responsibilities very similar to a lot of other adminstrative positions.  There are a lot of administrators at UM that aren't alums, just like there are a lot of professors who didn't graduate from UM.  Should every coach and administrator in the Athletic Department be a former UM athlete?

05/17/2014 - 10:22pm I haven't seen any evidence

I haven't seen any evidence that the organization is falling apart.  Alumni organizations exist to help keep alums connected to their schools.  They encourage you to join by providing certain services that you may or may not like or want - things like a magazine, alumni events, discounts for things like insurance, etc.  If you don't like those things, don't join.  I joined the Alumni Association for one reason - access to Camp Michigania.  For me, that made it worth well more than the cost.

I agree that donations (above the cost of AAUM membership) are better directed elsewhere in the University.  I give annually to the School I graduated from.  I know I got a good education there and I feel that I am paying back for the financial support I got from UM while I was a student.  I love UM sports, but refuse to donate to the Athletic Department, including PSDs - which has caused me to give up my season basketball tickets after 23 years.

05/17/2014 - 9:56pm You are all missing Camp

You are all missing Camp Michigania - the best membership benefit of the Alumni Association.

04/18/2014 - 2:11pm This is a great discussion of

This is a great discussion of Beilein's offensive strategy.  I don't have any X's and O's stuff to add, but I do think it is important to acknowledge how important the unselfish team culture that Beilein, his staff, and his players have created is in making this offense work.  For as long as I have been a Michigan basketball fan, a common question has been: who will put the team on his back late in a tight game.  I don't worry so much about that anymore.

04/11/2014 - 9:51am When we left last Saturday,

When we left last Saturday, there was still a small pile of left over winter crud where the plow dumped everything all winter.  I am hoping it's gone by the time we get back.

04/11/2014 - 9:08am On the beach in South

On the beach in South Carolina after a very long Michigan winter.

04/05/2014 - 4:01pm No sour grapes - didn't like

No sour grapes - didn't like him before Michigan played them and still don't like him.  Two vacated final four appearances at two different schools is enough to convince me he's a cheater.  And no, I wouldn't love to have him in Ann Arbor.  Better to have a very good clean program than a great dirty one.

04/05/2014 - 10:04am Great analysis of the pros

Great analysis of the pros and cons of staying.  What I appreciate the most is that the OP doesn't presume to tell Nik, Glenn, and Mitch what is best for them.  This is a really complicated, very personal decision.  I am dismayed when I read comments that speculate on college athletes personal financial circumstances (e.g., "Glenn's father was an NBA star so he doesn't need the money") or that imply that leaving is disloyal - largely because it would disappoint fans.  None of us can put ourselves in their shoes and they don't owe us anything.

As a fan, I have really enjoyed watching all three of them. I would love to be able to see them play for Michigan for couple more years, but I respect whatever decisions they make, and will follow their future athletic careers wherever they end up. And whatever they decide, I am optimistic about next season.

04/01/2014 - 10:37pm I started watching Big 10

I started watching Big 10 basketball seriously during Orr years and have been a season ticketholder since the beginning of the Fisher era.  I like watching disciplined, unselfish teams that play above their individual talent level.  In that respect, Beilein is far superior to either Fisher or Frieder.  Similar to a previous comment, I left many games during the Fisher era thinking I had seen some amazing basketball talent, but rarely that I had seen a well-coached game.  Not so during the Beilein era.

03/30/2014 - 9:10pm As a Michigan fan with season

As a Michigan fan with season tickets for the past 23 years, I am very, very proud of this team. How can you not love a team as unselfish and over-achieving  as they have been?  Credit to the Beilein and the coaching staff for creating a great team culture.  I am looking forward to next year.  

03/29/2014 - 9:03am It has been a great showing

It has been a great showing in the tournament this year for the Big 10, but we really need one of the three teams to break the drought and win the Championship to convince a lot of other folks that the Big 10 is best.

From a statistical standpoint, the Big 10 has won Kenpom's conference ratings every year since 2011 and will almost certainly win this year as well.  Since 2003, the first year for Kenpom, no other conference has won the conference ratings for more than 2 consecutive years.  The 4 year dominance by the Big 10 indicates a top to bottom breadth that no other conference can currently match.

03/28/2014 - 9:40pm Just happy to be here!

Just happy to be here!

03/22/2014 - 11:34pm Nice piece on MLive on the

Nice piece on MLive on the players' and Beilein's reactions to 700 wins:

http://www.mlive.com/wolverines/index.ssf/2014/03/michigan_players_forc… 

03/15/2014 - 7:09pm We are 6 and 2 (6 of 8)

We are 6 and 2 (6 of 8) against MSU since 2011.  One more will make it 7 of 9.

03/12/2014 - 5:59pm I've been attending college

I've been attending college basketball games for almost 30 years and this expansion of the media ("official") timeouts has definitely taken a lot out of the game.  It used to be that coaches had to use their own timeouts to control the pace of the game.  The other team is on a roll - call a timeout.  Your players are looking gassed - call a timeout.  Judicious use of timeouts was part of the coaching strategy of the game.  Now coaches are more likely to wait a minute of two of game time for the media timeout they know is coming every 4 minutes.  When coaches had to use more of their own timeouts to control the game, it was a lot less likely that both teams would have 3 timeouts left in the last couple of minutes, leading to fewer situations where the last couple of minutes took 15 minutes of real time.

Either cut down on the number of team timeouts, or count every team timeout as a media timeout as well (counting down on the number of media timeouts).  Or do something more radical like 10 minute quarters with 5 minute commercial breaks a very limited team timeouts.

02/20/2014 - 8:04am What is the new spousal

What is the new spousal membership rule?

02/20/2014 - 8:03am Plenty to do for a 5 year old

Plenty to do for a 5 year old - I think this is the ideal age to start at Michigania.  He or she will have the time of his or her life.  The staff are great at keeping young lids active and entertained.  You can see a sample schedule here:

http://alumni.umich.edu/sites/all/files/docs/MorningGrid.pdf

02/19/2014 - 9:42pm We are long time 5th week

We are long time 5th week Michigania campers.  Our kids grew up going to Michigania, but we are taking a break now that they are in college.  I do miss it though and I can't recommend it enough, especially for families with young kids.  They have an incredible amount of freedom there in a very safe environment.  Meanwhile, parents get to go sailing, shooting, do a high ropes course, galze some pottery, or just sit and read all day.  We made some great friends with fellow alums and their families.

11/19/2013 - 7:10pm I've had season tickets since

I've had season tickets since 1990 and have seen a lot of really good and really bad games at Crisler.  I have a couple of observations about the atmosphere:

- It is a lot better now with the students on the sidelines behind the benches than it ever was in the old days when they sat behind the basket.  I haven't been a student in a long, long time but absolutely believe that if you want a great atmosphere at a college basketball game, you have to give the students the best seats.

- Over the past 23 years, the biggest negative change in the atmosphere is the the relentless promotions during every break.  Michigan has just forced the other team to call a timeout, the crowd is going wild and what to we hear - "Who wants a pizza?".  Meanwhile, the band has to sit still until the announcer is done with the latest promotion before they can play The Victors.  It didn't used to be like this and it really kills a lot of the fan participation.

11/14/2013 - 6:26pm Football school

I look forward to the day that people stop saying Michigan is a football school.  You are selling short a great university with a great athletic tradition outside of football.

10/22/2013 - 11:49pm Basketball?

Basketball?

09/14/2013 - 10:38pm High Holy Days, Akron, noon

High Holy Days, Akron, noon start, unhappiness with wasting time in line at previous games all seem like valid reasons for the student section to filll slowly.  It did look a lot more full by the 2nd quarter.  On the other hand, the east side club level seats looked to be more than half empty the entire game.  Why isn't anyone upset that the folks shelling out those kind of bucks can't be bothered to show up at all?

08/26/2013 - 1:24pm That's a great summary, but I

That's a great summary, but I will add a few personal comments on Michigania.  Our kids grew up going with us to Michigania every summer.  It is an amazing experience for kids.  They get to spend a family vacation with a lot of independence, making new friends and spending the day doing all sorts of great activities guided by an exceptional staff of college age counselors.  There is a rhythm to the week, with the same events occuring on the same days every year.  Traditions are big.  It is pretty cool to see the teens at camp singing with the younger kids while waiting for the wizard to ride by on the unicorn.

It is also a great week for adults.  I spend most of my time there sailing.  They have a large fleet of sailboats in all different sizes and the boating staff are always among the best there.  I also learned to shoot trap and skeet there, which I really enjoy.  Riding, the high ropes course, archery, tennis, ceramics, and arts and crafts  are all pretty popular activites for adults.  Evenings are spent at the faculty forums (4 nights) or hanging out with friends and family.  Some campers party pretty seriously, and there are lots of folks who want to talk about Michigan sports.  I agree that the Michigan elemant is not overbearing, but you will stand and sing The Victors several times during the week.  I highly recommend Camp Michigania for alums with children.

07/13/2013 - 12:53pm Within the campus area - I'd

Within the campus area - I'd recommend Pizza House or Original Cottage Inn for food that she might actually eat on an evening out as a student.  Mani Osteria is really, really good but I don't see a lot of students hanging out there - it's a bit more upscale.  I strongly recommend it if you want Italian food that is a little more imaginative.  I love Blimpy Burger, but never feel very good a couple hours later.  Angelos is definitely the best place near campus for breakfast.

Zingermans is the place for foodies and Kerrytown (the neighborhood it is in) is worth a visit for local atmosphere.  Zingerman's Roadhouse on the the west side of town is also very good - but again, not a likely place she will get to as a student.

Frita Batidos is also great as is Mark's Carts for casual dining.  Both are downtown, off of Main Street.  There are a lot of nice restuarants in the Main Street area.  If you want to splurge for dinner, I think Logan and the West End Grill are the best fine dining places in Ann Arbor, but they may be better choices for family visits when she is a student and you really want to celebrate something.

06/22/2013 - 1:25am Camp Michigania

We are long-time Michigania campers and have had amazing times there.  It is hard to beat as a family vacation - great location in northern Michigan, lots of activities for kids and adults, great staff, the chance to sing The Victors multiple times with other alums.  Our kids grew up going there and we have lots of great family memories.

08/28/2012 - 1:24pm OK, I guess you aren't a

OK, I guess you aren't a basketball season ticket holder so I'll try again since you still don't understand.  They could have offered long-time season ticket holders the chance to buy the same seats at a higher cost.  Instead they invoked a point system which just gave you a place in line but no sense of where you were in line or where you would need to be to get equivalent seats.  You had to make the donation just to secure a place in line, with no option to back out of the donation if you didn't like the seats you ended up with.  They gave extra points to long-time season ticket holders (although they only credited 20 years), but again there was no attempt to give fans any idea of relative value of those points.  I think they should and could have devised a system that gave long-time tickets holders the first option to retain their seats at the new going price, rather than putting us all in a new line with no idea where we stood.

I am not a football fan, so points, seat licences, etc are new to me.  Frankly I can't conceive of spending $5K per year for football tickets, but I am glad you feel you get your money's worth.  I have been a college basketball fan for more than 30 years and I do understand how money drives college sports.  I think they could have easily devised a system that would have increased revenues while still giving loyal fans the option to keep their seats.  The fact that they didn't try means that they really didn't care about fan loyalty. 

08/27/2012 - 10:40pm You missed my point.  I don't

You missed my point.  I don't mind a reasonable increase in ticket prices.  But my problem is that after 23 years of gradually getting better seats, I am now paying more for worse seats.  There are a lot of loyal long-time season ticket holders in the same situation.  Loyalty to the program doesn't matter.

08/27/2012 - 6:53pm After 23 years of basketball

After 23 years of basketball season tickets, including sitting through the Ellerbie years and a lot of other really bad teams, I had to make an extra $200 "donation" to stay in the running for season tickets in the same section I sat in for years.  And the donation didn't even help as I got worse seats than I had before.  They wouldn't refund my donation when I complained about getting worse seats.  This is why I don't like Dave Brandon and why this will be my last season at Crisler.  No respect for fan loyalty, only for maximizing revenue.

07/19/2012 - 4:50pm Sailing is my favorite

Sailing is my favorite activity at Michigania.  The boating staff are the best.  I grew up sailing on a small lake in Wisconsin, but hadn't sailed in years until I went to Michigania.  The first time I tipped a boat, there was a boating staff guy there in a whaler offering a hand almost as soon as I hit the water.  Great service, even if you are very experienced dealing with capsized boats.

I never minded the lifejacket requirement or the proficiency tests.  It's just basic risk management.  It's not good for business when campers are drowning or wrecking boats.

07/19/2012 - 4:09pm Camp Michigania

Best benefit from the Alumni Association - Camp Michigania.

If you have young kids and you like outdoor activites like sailing, shooting, riding, doing ropes courses, etc., it's a great vacation.  You get to have a great time while a superb staff of college students (many from UM) takes care of your kids, who are also having a great time.  Plus you have the opportunity to make friends with other alums of all ages, listen to faculty lectures in the evening if you want, and best of all, you get to stand up and sing The Victors multiple times during your week there.

07/09/2012 - 8:38am There are no legal places to

There are no legal places to run your dog within the city limits of Ann Arbor other than Olson Park, Swift Run Park, or your fenced yard.  Be a responsible owner and buy the dog license.  Surely you can afford less than a dollar a week.

Don't be one of those people.  I am a dog owner and I think that people who let their dogs run off leash in places like the Arb, Bird Hills, Argo Pond, Slauson Middle School, etc. just make life more difficult for the rest of us.