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09/11/2016 - 11:44pm In a patient's room

I was in my second year of residency in Portland, Maine.  We had finished morning report, and started to spread out through the hospital to get our work done.  I had just finished examining a patient, when I looked up, and saw the TV with the World Trade Center on fire.  I was too busy to stop, and kept going.  A little later, I was in another room, talking with another patient, the last person I had to see that morning, and asked them to fill me in on what was happening in New York, as he was glued to the TV.  He started to tell me they were not sure, some sort of terrible accident, and almost as soon as he said that, we watched live as the second plane hit the other tower.    

I went back to the work room the residents on our service used, and one of the interns on the service was on the phone, frantically calling people.  He was an older guy, who had come to medicine later in his life.  He was very frustrated and upset, and I asked him after he hung up what was going on.  Turned out his son worked in a kitchen a block from the World Trade Center.  He was trying to get him on the phone to see if he was ok, but he could not get through, and no one else in his family had heard from him.  I was the senior resident on the service that day, so I took his list, sent him home, and I and the other residents on the service went about getting done what needed to get done for his patients.  

He came in later the next day, and thanked me and the other residents on the service for covering for him.  We told him of course, and asked if he had gotten through.  He told us he had, about an hour before he came in to the hospital that morning.  

Today is the day my family celebrated my son's birthday.  He will be 14 tomorrow, on September 12th.  He was supposed to be born on the one year anniversary of 9/11/01, and I am happy he was kind of stubborn and waited another day so his birthday does not need to be forever tied to those events.  It is only now as a father, watching my boys grown up,  that I can begin to understand the hell that day must have been for this guy, and the relief he must have felt to hear his son on the phone that morning.  Unfortunately, so many others never had the chance to hear the voice of their loved ones again.  

12/31/2012 - 11:39pm Double IPA's East Coast style

Started the evening with Marshall Wharf's Cant Dog Imperial IPA, and switched over to The Alchemist's Heady Topper.  Mmmmhh, hoppy goodness.  Such a nice way to ring in the new year.

07/28/2012 - 6:45pm I would agree, Patrick

I would agree, Patrick Rothfuss has written two terrific fantasy novels in The Name of the Wind and The Wise Man's Fear.  Kvothe is one of the most interesting characters I have come across.  I am patiently awaiting the next book, I am sure it will be worth it.

06/08/2012 - 9:38pm I lived in the New Center

I lived in the New Center area for a few years when I was in school and doing rotations at Henry Ford.  Oddly enough, I had lived in Cleveland the prior 2 years before moving back to Detroit.  I very much enjoyed living in the city, and that was back before the rebirth of Harmony Park and the move to Comerica Park...yeah, dating myself.  Detroit is like any other city, you need to know where you are and what is around you, but I never had a problem and enjoyed my time living in the city quite a bit.  

I went back to visit family last year and took my parents to The Whitney for dinner (just a fun building to get a cocktail and walk around) and I was really happy to see how much Woodward has changed.  For old times, I drove down from Grand Blvd to the river, and while there is still quite a bit that is in bad need of repair, but also there was so much more going on then when I lived there.  The area around Wayne State and the DIA was so much better, I was kind of jealous that was not there when I lived in the city.

If I was young and single, I would live in the city again.  It is hard to appreciate how wealthy Detroit once was until you start poking around those old buildings downtown, and it is cool to see some of that coming back. 

06/06/2012 - 9:14pm The plan is apparently to be

The plan is apparently to be done with the last book and have it released before the start of season 7 on HBO, so that is 5 more years to finish the last 2 books.  Apparently the HBO producers know the major plot points of the end of the story, so they can finish the series if he pulls a Robert Jordan.  As it stands right now, he has said he will only do 7 books...but who knows. 

06/06/2012 - 6:12pm I made the horrible mistake

I made the horrible mistake of reading Game of Thrones when it first came out.  The books are so good,  it makes the wait between them agony.  At least I can watch the shows as I wait for the next book release.  

05/25/2012 - 9:10am Fitted hats -- always

I still wear the Michigan hat I bought in '92 ,my freshman year.  University Square hat, I got it at Moe's I believe.  It is kinda worn out.  Ok, really worn out, but it fits like no other hat.  I break it out in the summer when we go on camping trips, and I wear it when I go to Michigan games.  Yes, I am a bit superstitious.  I switched to a yellow hat for Michigan games during the RichRod era for the "maize out" effect against my better judgement.  Yeah, it is retired.  I blame the hat. 

05/16/2012 - 9:55pm I graduated from Michigan

I graduated from Michigan undergrad in 96, my wife from grad school in 98.  We are both from the Metro Detroit area.  Careers/life have taken us away from Michigan, but we have kept our season tickets.  My parents seats are next to mine.  I go back for about 2 games a year, doling the rest to friends and family, but since they are my tickets, I get to cherry pick the best games.

I went to 2 games last year.  I was at the ND game, and it was amazing.  However, the OSU game that will go down as the greatest I have ever attended.  My 9 y.o. son, who I have brainwashed since he was in the womb to be a Michigan fan, made the trip with me for his first  OSU game.  He was standing between my parents, enthralled as Michigan defeated our arch rivals for the first time in his memory.  It was one of the best moments of my life, and the true reason I have kept my tickets even though I live a thousand miles away.  After the game, I asked him if he wanted to go down on the field with everyone else, and he said, "No, I just want to sit here with Grandma and Grandpa and watch."  So for the next 30 minutes the 4 of us just hung out in the stands and took it all in.  I will never see Michigan Stadium again without thinking about that game.   

09/23/2011 - 6:09pm White Birch Brewing Hop

White Birch Brewing Hop Session Ale.  Pretty good amber, I am impressed.

08/16/2011 - 10:46pm Jolly Pumpkin has a short but

Jolly Pumpkin has a short but very good menu.  I ate there last year around Thanksgiving, and the focus was fresh/local take on pub grub.  Nothing radical, but good.  Their beer is something else.  They have some of the best sour/wild beers in America.  If you dig on funky/sour brews, this is one of the breweries that have figured it out.  I will say though, the bacterial/brett character of their beers on tap was much lower then anything I had in bottles, but then, I only get the stuff shipped out here to Maine that have been able to stew for a bit.  On tap, it was not nearly as pronounced. 

02/11/2011 - 8:22pm Fun article.  I live about an

Fun article.  I live about an hour from Orono, and caught a Maine hockey game last year.  Was a good crowd, and it is an interesting arena.  I was worried about bringing my kids because of the chants I was familiar with at Michigan.  I don't need my 6 y.o. asking what everyone was shouting after the "C'YA" chant.  Maine was definately friendly.  The digs were a little more subtle, like the band playing the music from the Smiling Bob Enzyte commercials when the refs come out before the game.  I don't know if the Michigan band does that, last time I was at a Michigan game was long before those commercials came out, but it was pretty funny.

01/21/2011 - 11:39pm Fat Tire is a good choice. 

Fat Tire is a good choice.  Can't get that out here, but had a chance to try it once when I was out West.  When I drink local, I have to settle for Allagash...oh the horrors!

01/21/2011 - 11:34pm I was the same class as the

I was the same class as the Fab 5.  The win over Kentucky in 1993 was one of the most fun nights I ever had on campus.  Everyone was pouring out of the dorms and storming the Union and then down to South U.  It was incredible.  The North Carolina game...not so much...and all the stuff that came out in the following years ruined it.  I have enjoyed the 30 for 30 documentaries I have seen so far, I will be interested to see this when it comes out.

01/21/2011 - 11:13pm On call this weekend :(

But I brought back a bottle of Noel de Calabaza from Michigan...and I think that will grace my dinner table on Monday when I can imbibe again.  I am digging the Jolly Pumpkin brews.  For the folks who were trying the Bell's Oarsman, isn't that their first run at a sour mash?

11/05/2010 - 9:07pm Yes!  As we were at the

Yes!  As we were at the bonfire, we did burn an effigy of "the Guy".  My friend explained the story behind it, the proper spelling of his name, and a few pointers on how to make a good effigy.  This seems to be a very necessary skill in England.  Fortunately, we did this over a few pints of bitter.  I guess you could consider this a practice run.  Always good to learn new things, and develop new skills.  Who knows when this knowledge may come in handy!  In return, he is going to come over and watch the game tomorrow.  He is starting to develop a taste for college ball, even if it is not "proper football."

11/05/2010 - 4:48pm Oatmeal brown ale that I

Oatmeal brown ale that I brewed up a few weeks ago and just put on tap.  A coworker is hosting a Guy Fox bonfire tonight, so I am sure some other form of english inspired silliness will also occur.

10/09/2010 - 9:00pm Well, at the beginning of the

Well, at the beginning of the season, if you told me we would be 5-1 at the midway point, I would have said, "Yes please, thank you."  Losing to Sparty sucks, but with our defense forcing us to have to score over 30 to have a chance, I think everyone knew were were going to take some lumps in conference play.  Right now, I would take 3-3 for the rest of the season and be pretty happy with that. 

Ok, on to the "reacting".  Denard had to come back to being human at some point, and today was the day.  The defense is a lost cause, I can see it getting slightly better as the secondary continues to learn on the job, but until we have better talent on that side of the ball that knows what it is doing, we are not going to see that much of a leap.  We are half way through the year, it pretty much is what it is, terrible.  However, the running back situation continues to vex me more then anything else.  Can we please see more of the other backs?  Smith/Shaw are just not the solution, and we have at least 6 more games (hopefully 7) before we can annoint Dee Hart as our running back savior.  Lets see what the other guys can do.

10/07/2010 - 11:59pm As a Michigan grad living in

As a Michigan grad living in the Maine, I can echo his comments about what happened when I wear my Michigan gear in public.  I always wear a Michigan tie in the office on Fridays before a game, and most times on weekends when I am out and about, I have on my Michigan ballcap.  Even here where college football is barely on the radar, I would get people coming up and asking me when RR was going to get canned.  However, that all changed once the season started.  Now all I hear is how cool Denard is, how much fun he is to watch play.  New England does not have much of a college football tradition but most of the Big 10 games are on TV here, and people have been noticing Michigan.  Having UConn and Notre Dame on major network channels right off the bat helped a ton, and most everyone has ESPN in its various forms.  As a casual fan, watching games that feature a ton of offense (problematically for my heart it comes from both teams) with a player as exciting as Denard is fun.  I know several people who are now tuning in just to see him. 

Michigan has always been a national program.  The school is universally respected both for its education and its athletics, and not being in the grips of the local Detroit media, it has been odd to realize how non-existant Michigan State is to people outside of the state of Michigan.  One of my colleagues here went to MSU, he mentioned when that comes up, he often has to correct people that no, he is not a Wolverine, he is in fact a Spartan.  Fortunately, I don't have that problem.  Losing to MSU would hurt, just like it always does, but somehow, win or lose I think I will probably be seeing more of Denard and the Wolverines on the major network channels then I will Sparty.  After a 2 year hiatus, Michigan is back on the national scene thanks to Denard, and damn, does that feel good.

09/12/2010 - 5:53pm I enjoy a bottle of russian

I enjoy a bottle of russian imperial stout I brewed 4 years ago and save for times like these.  After the last 2 years, I still have a bit of a stock in the cellar, hope it see it dwindle this year!


02/13/2010 - 2:35pm I got married at the First

I got married at the First United Methodist Church on State St. We had the reception at the Michigan League. We had 2 rooms, with the adjoining alcove between them on the 2nd floor. Set up the bar in the alcove, had dinner in one room, and then the party in the other. We had a room at the Campus Inn for the evening. Was great, hit the church, then most people walked to the League. Had a very nice dinner (I thought the food was pretty good and they would buy any wine you wanted, just had to get it by the case and they got to keep the extras) then we walked to the Campus Inn. We figured, when in Ann Arbor, you walk. We had a blast walking down the street, everyone was honking their horn and clapping for us as we walked by. It was a smaller wedding, only 92 people (we had to pay for it on a very modest budget, so decided less people but higher quality) but I would do it exactly the same way again. Plus, the wedding party liked it, because they got to crash Ashley's after the reception and kept the party going to the wee hours.

02/08/2010 - 9:08pm 8 Ball!

I lived south of campus off Division, so for birthdays we tended to hang out more on the Main Street side of town. A good protein base and a few pints of good brews at Grizzly Peak was always a solid start. Then off to The Full Moon for another few pints of something tasty, then down to the 8 Ball to get your drink on. At closing time, you could take a quick turn by the Fleetwood to get some more grease in your system to make the morning just that much more enjoyable. It has been almost 15 years, so I am not sure if the Full Moon or the 8 Ball are still there, but I had a great time hitting those places on my 21st, and many, many times afterward.

02/08/2010 - 8:25pm Russia Today...

I am not sure if they still have the class, but Russia Today was a blast, and the easiest A out there. It also qualified for the Race or Ethnicity requirement (not sure if they still have that requirement). My buddy and I used to take turns going. Even though his notes consisted mostly of scribbles with the pen sliding off the paper, only to be blurred by the drool from him asleep face down on the notebook, we still both aced it. If you actually listened to the lecture, it was pretty cool, but.....I had better things to do.

Ahh, the good times.

01/31/2010 - 3:59pm Hey, I started homebrewing my

Hey, I started homebrewing my sophomore year at Michigan. It was always kinda odd that as a 19 y.o. I could buy all the ingredients to make beer, but not beer. Anyway, I got into brewing at that time, and it is a hobby I still enjoy. Fortunately, my wife likes beer, so this makes it much easier.

If you are looking to start brewing, I would start with "The Complete Joy of Homebrewing" by Charlie Papazian. It is probably the book that has gotten most folks into homebrewing, and walks you right through the process, and outlines the equipment you need. Also, look up and go to a local homebrew shop. The guys there will be more then happy to talk with you, and almost every shop has a basic starter kit you can get for pretty cheap (well under $100). The biggest expense early on is going to be getting a brew pot, but with some of the new no boil kits (I have not tried these, I only heard about them when I was BSing with my local homebrew shop guys) that may not even be an issue. It is a great hobby and a ton of fun. I agree with some of the folks above, the Beer Machine stuff seems to be ok at best. If boiling a few gallons of water seems daunting, check out the home winemaking kits, they are pretty good, easy as can be, but quite a bit more expensive then the ingredients for beer.

When I got into brewing in Ann Arbor, I meet some folks through The Merchant of Vino (long gone, think it is Whole foods now) by north campus that introduced me to the Ann Arbor Brewers guild. They had meetings regularly, and were a great bunch of folks. If there are any brewers in Ann Arbor not hooked up with them, probably worth checking them out.

As of right now, I have a Helles Bock ready to go into secondary, a bitter I made out of some extra grain and hops I had laying around ready to be racked as well, and about 6 different types of cider and 8 different meads aging from this fall. This is going to be a fun summer!

01/21/2010 - 10:23pm I basically came down to

I basically came down to looking at Michigan or Penn. I loved both schools, but growing up in Michigan and being pretty sure I was going to go to school beyond undergrad, cost became a huge factor. Michigan, for an in-state student, just made sense. Great education at a reasonable cost. Would I have gone to Michigan without the athletics, yeah, but the great thing about it is...I didn't have to make that choice. You can have the best of both!

12/17/2009 - 11:57pm Thanks, I appreciate the kind

Thanks, I appreciate the kind words.

I have been reading the boards for a few months, but finally had to jump in on this thread. Reminds me of many reasons why I loved going to the school so much. Seems like a good chunk of the married folks here got hitched at the League.

12/16/2009 - 11:46pm I to have a soft spot in my

I to have a soft spot in my heart for the scenery around the Michigan League, looking back down toward the Grad library. Like Wolverine In Exile, I to got married there, so I am sure that is part of it. The fact you were a quick trip to Ashley's from there for a quick pint of something tasty did not hurt my impression of the place either.

I also always enjoyed coming in toward the Diag from the engineering arch on a warm summer day. That is when you would look around and ask yourself, "Were these girls here in the winter?"