Sunday, October 31, 2004

Boo! Happy Halloween to all the gouls, goblins and ghosts out there tonight. Its a rainy, dreary night here in Dallas Texas. Perfect for guys who look like this dude. Ha!

Preparing For Life On The Trail

As plans gear up for a 2005 hike on the Appalachian Trail, I needed a resource to help my team of hikers colaberate and organize our efforts. After searching the web for what I was looking for, I can up empty handed. So, I made my own. Introducing . Originally I set up this forum site for myself and the 3 others accompanying me on this adventure. But I thought, why not open it up for all hikers who want a place to share their favorite hiking and trekking spots, stories and gear opinions? So, I extend a welcome to any thorpeland blog readers who want to create a free account on my new site and share their stories and information! Check it out!

Friday, October 29, 2004

Getting On With It

A few months ago in this here blog, I spoke about a number of places that were on my "list to visit" in the future. One of those such places I listed was to hike, at least a portion of, the Appalachian Trail. Well to update everyone, plans are moving forward. I have officially got a comitment from 3 of my good buddies who are now just as pumped as I am to begin this adventure. We have begun assembling gear, supply lists and the information needed to tackle this adventure. As of now it's looking like we will be on the trail in late spring of 2005. We have a date, but im not ready to officially announce it here. I've just about worked out the logistics of transportation to and from the trail and how to get all our gear to Atlanta airport and to Springer Mountain (the trailhead).

After a ton of research on the A.T. I'm realizing what a challange lies before us. We plan on hiking the first section of the trail, which is Springer Mountain to Neels Gap. We'll be covering about 15 miles a day, carrying 40lb packs and climbing a series of mountain ranges with altitudes of up to 8000ft. Believe me, we've already started training for this. Although challanging, I believe this will be a very rewarding adventure and I will return with some incredible photographs and some incredible stories. Stay tuned as the trip nears for more progress reports!

Sunday, October 24, 2004

This weekend we were honored with a visit from me and Emily's old friends Mike and Cheryl. It was great to see them! They drove up from Galveston Texas for the weekend to catch a Beastie Boys concert in Dallas and say hi to everyone. Cheryl is in medical school down there and Mikey works for the local Big Brothers organization.

Thursday, October 21, 2004

Uhh... I Like Toast?

Its the small things that entertain me during a day at work. Dont get me wrong, I enjoy my work. But sometimes I encounter people that can be a bit frusterating or a bit slower than I would like them to be. Allow me to humor myself by retelling an event that happened to me on Wednesday. Currently we were doing an inventory count on all the PC monitors on the network. I go around with a little infra-red scanner and scan in the bar code on the back of the monitor and record who sits there and what department they're in. So I go into an office and start scanning a monitor. Suddenly, the guy who sits there comes up and asks what I'm doing. I explain thoroughly about our inventory project and how I have to recored each monitor. Sticking very specifically to describing it only concerns the monitors. He looks at me with a blank stare for about 6 seconds, then points to his desk and says, "Ive got a new printer". There's another long pause as I try to think of an answer to this totally non-related statement. He's got a new printer? So what? The only response I can muster is a forced smile and a quick "thumbs up" hand gesture. I then go back to my scanning and he walks off. For the rest of the day, I keep replaying the event in my head. What possesed this man to tell me he had a new printer? And why to tell me after I explained why im there? Im just baffeled. It was humorous when I look back on it. Perhaps the correct response to him should have been, "Yes, and I like toast!"

Tuesday, October 19, 2004

Gimme My Money.... NOW!

I had a rather funny thing happen to me this past weekend. Let me first set the stage. I play the weekly Texas Lottery, but I get my tickets thru a site called . This site purchases the tickets for you and if you win, they mail the paper ticket to you. Very convenient! So, I match 3 numbers and win $5. Ive won small cash before and each time I get a ticket, its on a strangely smooth paper. Not the normal lottery ticket paper. I walk up to the lady working the register at this rather rural gas station and hand her my ticket saying I think I have matched some numbers and i'd like to cash the ticket in. She takes my ticket and quickly notices the different paper. She looks at me with a confused look and then back at my ticket. Here's where the fun starts. She runs the ticket thru the official lottery machine. Which then prints out a legit cash-in voucher for them to pay me. She shakes her head and says, "This isnt right... it cant be". Then she looks back at me and says, "I dont think this is a real ticket, where did you get this?" I start to explain, but she quickly turns away and starts whispering to the lady working with her. Although I can hear her loud and clear, I stand patiently, waiting for my cash. I hear the other lady mumble something about, "... well if you arent sure, dont pay him". I wanted to say, "Hello, im standing right here!" Thats when i forcefully make them listen to the story of where the ticket came from. Still, she doesnt really believe me. Reluctantly, she cashes the voucher and pays me my money. I then say to her, "what did you think, i print these things off on my computer?" She doesnt answer, just starres at me. Ppphffftt...gimme my money country bumpkin!

Monday, October 18, 2004

Hello from the State Fair of Texas! Emily and I headed to Fair Park and Big Tex (in the background) this past Saturday. It was a fun day. I thought the big crowds and high prices of everything would dampen our day, but it didnt! It was my first time to the state fair and overall I'd recommend it to others. Just go prepared to spend about $50 per person!

Friday, October 15, 2004

For my annual Jack O Lantern, this season I choose a Clockwork Orange theme. Isnt he just the scaries pumpkin on the block? Ha!!

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

You've Been Downgraded, Thank You.

About six months ago, the managers in my office come back to my departments work area and tell us, "Good news!! We've got approval to renovate the entire department. Everyone will have new large work areas!" This was great news. Granted I had a large desk and work area, it would be nice to not be packed in so close to my coworkes.

As each month went by, I noticed people coming and going with maps, floorplans and tapemeasures. The time was nearing and I was excited to one day move into a spacious office work area. You see, my desk never has fewer than 4 pc's stacked up on it. Not to mention various cables, mice, keyboards, ect. I need more space!!

So, August comes along and the construction begins. But I notice something odd. They are only knocking down and building walls in a fraction of the area I thought they were supposed to. This cant be right? If they build the new area the size that this is looking like, we'll have a tiny work area! I must be mistaken. So I ask my boss a few days later, whats the deal? He tells me, our budget got reduced so we are getting a much smaller work area that previously planned!! NO!! Now, we are into October and the new office is almost complete. I hear they have just installed the new cubicals and I want to have a look. I walk into the new office area, round the corner....... NOOOOOO!!! SMALLER DESKS THAN WE HAD BEFORE!!! Ive gone from having a spacious 3 sided desk/work area, to a smaller 2 sided desk. I quickly see I'm not the only one shocked. My co-workers see this new office and are just as insulted and horrified as I am. My boss is so far sitting on the fence. He hasnt really said much of anything either way. The disgusting part of all this is, I just know the upper management cant wait to walk into the new office when we get moved in, throw their arms up in the air with a huge smile on their face and say, "Well, what do you guys think!?" The scary thing is, I truly do not believe they are ready for the answer they are going to hear.

Sunday, October 10, 2004

Saturday night me, Emily, my friend James and her friend Shannon went to Medieval Times. It was a blast watching the knights fight it out while eating a feast. A bit expensive but worth it to do once in a while. Like my crown in the picture? Everyone wears them while there. That is a real suit of armour behind me, with a price tag of $3000 on it. I'll take 5 please! :)

Friday, October 01, 2004

Finding the Touch Again

After taking a couple seasons off from playing on multipel soccer teams I began to feel my ball control skills and my scoring touch slide a bit. So now I'm playing 3 times a week. Twice on league teams and once with a group just playing casual pick up. Its already having good results! My endurance is improving along with my touch. I scored 1 goal on tuesday nights game and then scored 2 of my teams 3 goals in a 3-0 win Thursday night. I'm back!