Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Please hold . . .

Things are wicked stressful around here at the moment. We're in the "oh shit" phase of a huge project at work, I owe so many people emails and phone calls and coffee dates that I'm starting to feel like I'm never going to catch up. And, as usual, I'm finding myself dreaming of my favorite outdoorsy places. Always seems to happen when life is such that I am barely outside my office in daylight. And, of course, it doesn't help that I've been watching a little chunk of the Ken Burns National Parks special each night when I get home from work. Amazing, amazing stuff. I never, ever buy DVDs, but I think this one is going to have to be an exception!

Anyway, until I have time again for a real post, and until I have time to actually get back outdoors (still hoping for one last camping trip before the snow really sets in in the Sierras), here are a couple more of my favorite pics from this summer's wanderings:

High Sierras, somewhere near the Tioga Pass:


And on the North Dome Trail, Half Dome behind me. (Why is it that the sight of Half Dome in the distance still takes my breath away, even though I've seen it dozens of times? Seriously --every. single. time.)



Saturday, September 26, 2009

Missing Autumn


For the past several days, I've been dreaming of fall. Apple-picking and pumpkin patches and of hills covered in red-garbed maples. Dreams of bundling up in a warm sweater and corduroy pants and getting lost in a good old fashioned corn maze. The midwesterner in me always comes out with a vengeance in the fall, because as much as I love California, fall never feels like autumn to me here. This is my 4th fall living here, and this is the closest I've ever found to the midwestern autumn colors in my heart:

This was taken last year in Lake Tahoe, somewhere near Emerald Bay. It's lovely -- the yellow aspens against the brilliant blue of the sky. In fact, I'm planning a trip to the Sierras in a couple weeks to enjoy the lovely weather again. (Anyone want to recommend where's best in October -- Tahoe, Yosemite, or Sequoia / Kings Canyon?) But, still, I'm lonely right now for home and the paintbox autumns of my childhood.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

What I did on my summer vacation, Part 5


Enjoyed a lot of sunsets:

San Francisco, Land's End, June:

At an Oakland A's Game, June: (Fun game, lousy baseball stadium)

May Lake, Yosemite, July:

On the Trinity River, July: (My first time whitewater rafting!):

Lower Sunrise Lake, Yosemite, August:

Cathedral Lake, Yosemite, August:

Glen Arbor, Michigan. August: (The view from the porch of my parent's Lake Michigan beach house)

Lake Michigan, Glen Arbor, September:
(Don't know the guy fishing, but he sure does add to the picture, huh?)

Oh yeah, and lest you think I'm never home (Ken, I'm totally looking at you!), Right outside my own front door.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

What I did on my summer vacation, part 4






Went hiking and in love all over again with the brilliant sunlit green of midwestern woods. Don't get me wrong, I love love love the California out doors, but we just don't have the same kind of gorgeous hardwood forests here.



I only wish I hadn't been too early for fall colors. The brilliant red orange yellow against deep blue sky of a Michigan October day has always and will always take my breath away.


Also, remembered just how gorgeous Lake Michigan is.


Especially seen from the top of a crazy steep sand dune in the middle of the woods.


What I did on my summer vacation, Part 3

Oh, and did I mention the jumping?


Monday, September 14, 2009

What I did on my summer vacation, Part 2


Made other people jump, too.


My sister, Dana:



My dad (jumping for apples):


Dorian:



(Aren't they all good sports, indulging my new-found joy in jumping pictures?)

Monday, September 7, 2009

Molten Lake

On vacation with the family in Northern Michigan right now. I've been spending a lot of time NOT at my computer, looking at scenery like this. Just lovely.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Daily Dose of Gratitude #61

1. An awesome, challenging soccer practice last night. And dinner waiting for me when I got home.

2. Kiss My Face Ginger Mango lip balm (and Vanilla Honey, too).

3. D. packing up a lunch for me before sending me off to work this morning -- half a leftover veggie burrito from last night, with a few carrots tucked in the bag, too, since he knows I'm always craving more veggies.

4. An upcoming weekend with nothing, nothing, nothing planned. (Thanks to a canceled camping trip, followed by me very zealously protecting my down time).

5. It's Friday, yay!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Daily Dose of Gratitude #60

1. A lovely weekend backpacking the high Sierras.

2. Bedtime bourbon and hot chocolate by the edge of Sunrise Lake.

3. The purple of a post-storm sunset, reflecting in a cold mountain lake.

4. A good tent and rain gear, which kept us (mostly) dry in the deluge we were caught in Saturday night and most of Sunday.

5. A backpacking partner who was very, very patient with me even in the midst of a wee meltdown on the final stretch of our trip. (Soaking wet gear, slick and muddy trails, no hot breakfast or morning coffee). There might have been a little bit of bitching and moaning and few tears. I might have been the one doing the bitching and bawling. :-)

Pictures as soon as I find the damn camera cable.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Daily Dose of Gratitude #59

1. I am in a brilliantly happy mood today, for no particular reason that I can discern. It's lovely, though. I love those moments when you're just driving along, maybe with the windows down and a great song on the radio, and suddenly you're struck with this glowing feeling of pure happiness. That was my drive to work this morning :-)

2. A great soccer game last night. We won 4-1, and I had a goal and 2 assists. And it was fun, fun, fun - not always the case lately, since my team is a wee bit flaky.

3. My "emergency" curry -- chickpeas and whatever veggies I have around sauteed with tons of madras curry powder, chicken broth, and a big scoop of plain yogurt. Serve over quinoa. Healthy, yummy, and make-able in less than 20 minutes!

4. Passion fruit lip balm. (Though I think everyone should call passion fruit by its Hawaiian name, lillikoi. It's just so much prettier!)

5. An adorable shirt for just 3 bucks. Dear Gap, I LOVE your wicked cheap clearance prices -- 5 items of adorable summer clothing for, like, $30 :-)

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Daily Dose of Gratitude #58 -- Special Baseball Themed Edition!

1. A baseball game on a foggy San Francisco summer night. I love watching the fog swirl around the lights.

2. A very generous friend who gave us his rather awesome tickets, since he was chillin' in a VIP box and not using them anyway. I LOVE being close to the action at a baseball game.

3. Ballpark hot-dogs with lots of spicy mustard, relish, and onions.

4. Taking BART to the game. I miss taking trains on a daily basis!

5. The person blowing soap bubbles from the upper deck at the baseball stadium.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Daily Dose of Gratitude #57

1. Berry picking with an old friend, at a beautiful coastal farm.

2. A fridge full of home-made jam -- yum!

3. A lazy Sunday morning spent drinking coffee slowly and sharing the paper with someone who doesn't fight me for the crossword.

4. Hot summer days, at last, and nights warm enough to sleep with all the windows open.

5. Vacation planning (now if I could only decide which vacation to take!)

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Daily Dose of Gratitude #56

1. Words I am grateful for today: Miniature, indubitably, Umber

2. The productive afternoon that followed my far-less-than-productive morning.

3. Watching a character I conceptualized come to life on video.

4. Baseball tickets for next week (Giants vs. Dodgers -- I don't much care about either team, but I'm told that it's a big rivalry and will be a fun fun fun game)

5. Giving myself permission to do the thing that is right for me tonight (go to the gym, read bad vampire novel, wash underwear in the sink so I don't have to go commando for the rest of the week) instead of going to a party that would involve a 3+ hour round-trip drive with traffic. Even though I feel horribly guilty (sorry Moose and Kristin) and a little disappointed over missing the party (Free! Gap! Jeans!)

Monday, August 3, 2009

Daily Dose of Gratitude #55

1. Watching Pretty in Pink from a blanket in Dolores Park . . .

2. . . . behind a group of very large gay men wearing sparkly pink prom dresses . . .

3. . . . after running into an old college friend, whom I haven't seen in probably 10 years . . .

4. . . . with the whole crowd cheering every time Duckie came on screen . . .

5. . . . and realizing that I'm so very glad I don't go for the pretty-but-jerky boys anymore -- as a teenager, I was thrilled that Andie ends up with Blaine. But I watch the movie now and all I can think is, wow, Blaine is really a dick. Andie should have gone for Duckie! :-) . . .

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Daily Dose of Gratitude #54

1. This song:



I've seriously had it on repeat for two days now. Lovely.


2. Seared tuna with fingerling potatoes, doused in olive oil and chili powder, then grilled.

3. Talking excitedly to someone who loves books just as much as I do, but in a totally different way.

4. A house full of books upon books upon books, crammed into every possible corner.

5. A Soy Latte after a night of too-little sleep.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

May Lake





(Okay, so this is long overdue, but I've figured out a workaround for the photo uploading issues I've been having, finally)

My second night in Yosemite on my trip a few weeks ago, I spent the night out at May Lake, in the high country near Tuolumne Meadows.    It's about 8 miles from Glen Aulin, with a trailhead off the Tioga Road, so you could easily do the two together on a weekend.  

Anyway, May Lake is a great beginner's backpack.  I've been told it can be difficult to get a backcountry permit for there, especially at peak times, but I had no trouble -- perhaps because I was heading in on a Thursday night, relatively early in the season.  Early enough, in fact, that there was still snow on the ground. A LOT of snow, actually. 



It's only about 1.2 miles up to May Lake from the parking area. It is an all-uphill hike, at about 9000 feet altitude, but because it's so short, I think pretty much anyone could do it, even with no backpacking experience at all.  And there are some lovely views from the trail. 



Just like at Glen Aulin, there's a High Sierra Camp at May Lake and a backpacker's campground. The campground is right on the shore of May Lake.   How 'bout this site:  



That's the lake behind my tent there, a stone's throw away.   Oh, and San Francisco friends, if you've ever wondered where your water comes from, here's one answer:



I feel like I sound like a broken record whenever I talk about Yosemite, but like everything else up there, May Lake is absolutely gorgeous. In the evening, it gets all glassy, sheltered as it is down in a swale of rock, and the reflection of those amazing Sierra clouds that Ansel Adams made so famous is striking. I probably took well over 100 pictures there (thank goodness for digital!). 



Apparently the bugs can get bad around the lake, but I had no problems in late June. Perhaps because it was still pretty chilly. I'd guess it got down close to 30 degrees overnight, and I already mentioned the snow.  The High Sierra Camp didn't look anywhere near ready to open for the season, in fact.   In terms of other wildlife, a deer wandered right through my camp while I was setting up, and there were a TON of yellow-bellied marmots about, particularly in the morning.    I watched them for quite a while Friday morning, as I made my coffee and breakfast. They're interesting creatures -- left one on guard as the rest were running about getting water, searching for food, etc. 



They're nicknamed "picket pins," which you understand once you see one standing up on its hind legs. And, man, they're bigger than I thought. I always imagined marmots to be sort of squirrel sized, but these are more like the size of a beaver. I'd guess they easily weigh 20 lbs. Maybe more. I've heard that they can be scavengers and try to get into your food, even when you're standing right there, but I didn't have any problems. And, of course, my food was all locked up in a bear cannister overnight. Oh yeah, bears are apparently also an in this area, but I certainly didn't see one. I think they tend to follow the dumb tourists, so they're more likely to be seen during the high season, when there are lots of folks out there and not everyone is following good back-country food storage principles.

The only thing I didn't like about May Lake is the fact that you can't swim there.  Not that I really wanted to swim in a high sierra lake that was still surrounded by snow.  But, generally, it seems like it really just BEGS to be swum in, but since it is a domestic water source, you're not allowed. (Hey, question -- why is that the rule? I mean, you can swim in the Great Lakes and those are also domestic water sources. Doesn't the water get treated in various ways before becoming drinking water, anyway? Does it have something to do with the size of the body of water? Or just California paranoia? Yes, I googled it. No answer.)  

Anyway, I'm planning another trip to May Lake soon.  I'm thinking I'll take some friends who are new to backpacking and break 'em in easy.  Think morning coffee with this laid out before them will convince them that it's not so bad to carry everything you need on your back, sleep on the ground, and pee in the woods? 


Daily Dose of Gratitude # who-the-hell-knows

1.  My first whitewater rafting trip.  (Can't promise any pictures -- I didn't have a good dry bag for my camera, so I'm waiting for my trip-mates to maybe send me some of theirs). 

2.  Randomly pulling off the side of the road on the long, hot drive home for a dunk in the river. 

3.  Precocious 4-year-olds. 

4.  Parents who don't let kids stop them from doing all the same cool outdoorsy stuff they did pre-kids. 

5. A million stars sprinkled overhead and no responsibilities other than to lay back and look at them for as long as I want. 

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Daily Dose of Gratitude #52

1. That this accident wasn't way worse. Feel better soon, K.

2. Pizzeria Picco. Especially the Strauss Organic soft serve ice cream with dark caramel and sea salt. Yum, yum, yum.

3. Peanut butter toast with homemade raspberry-peach jam.

4. Reading Pride and Prejudice by headlamp while bundled up in my warm sleeping bag in the Yosemite backcountry.

5. After years of resisting, finally reading Pride and Prejudice and discovering that I actually really like Jane Austen. Who knew?!?

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Glen Aulin



Last week, I escaped to Yosemite for a few days. I was in dire need of a break, after a few stressful weeks at work. One of the things I really adore about living in the Bay area (and one of the things that will make it incredibly difficult for me to ever live anywhere else again) is that I can hop in my car and be in some of the most beautiful places on earth in less than 4 hours. And, really, it's hard to be stressed when you're miles from anywhere with no responsibilities other than hiking and setting up your tent each night. Oh, and make lovely steamy cups of bourbon and hot chocolate before bed. :-)

Anyway, my first night out on this trip, I decided to head out into the back country up near Tuolumne. I did an overnight to Glen Aulin.




One of the things I really love about Yosemite is that there are a lot of "backpackers campgrounds." Basically, at really popular locations, they've set up back-country campgrounds, with pit toilets, water, and bear lockers to store your food. I especially like them when I'm backpacking alone, because that way I know that there will be other folks around me in case there's some sort of emergency. In fact, it's really the only way I'll backpack alone. So there's one of these backpackers campgrounds at Glen Aulin, next to the High Sierra tent camp, and that's where I spent Wednesday night.

The High Sierra Camps are 6 camps set up in the Yosemite High Country. Each is a collection of canvas "tent cabins" in a beautiful setting. They're about a 7-10 mile hike apart from each other, and you can hike them in a loop, staying in the cabins each night and being fed dinner and breakfast. It's nice for people who want the feeling of backpacking but don't want to have to carry all their gear -- all you need to carry is your clothes. Some of the camps even have hot water and showers. I've personally never stayed at them, partly because they're quite expensive, but I'd love to someday. For now, though, I'll content myself with carrying my full pack and staying at the backpackers' campgrounds in the same places.

So, Glen Aulin is a little more than a 6 mile hike down from Tuolumne Meadows. It's a fairly easy 6 miles, especially on the way there, since it's nearly all flat or downhill. It's a nice way to acclimate to the altitude (7000-9000 feet), which can make exercise feel more difficult, but is only high enough to have made me sick once, when there was also really poor air quality because of a severe fire. (On that trip, we woke up each morning to a tent covered in ash blown in from the fires).

Basically, you follow the trail down from the Lembert Dome parking lot, near Soda Springs (which is a tiny little spring that bubbles up out of the ground already carbonated -- something to do with the chemicals in the earth there I think). The trail is lovely, weaving its way through High Sierra grassland and pine trees at first. Oh, and those blue, blue, blue Sierra skies.



For much of the hike, the river is tumbling over that famous Yosemite granite just off to the side of the trail.



There are also gorgeous views of snow-capped sierra mountains in the distance. Breathtaking.
Once you get down to the camp, there are a couple bridges and a lovely waterfall, where I drank my morning coffee the next morning, getting damp from the waterfall's mist.


There are 30 or so sites in the backpacker's campground. The first batch are literally right next door to the tent cabins, in a wooded dell. There's a pit toilet, bear lockers, and a water spigot there, which is convenient. However, I chose to continue up the hill about another 2/10 of a mile to the higher campsites, perched on a rocky outcropping above the river. Not only do I think these campsites are nicer, but it let me escape from the bustle of the boy scout troop that happened to be there the same night I was.



I camped in a lovely cove of rock, with the river rushing practically right underneath my tent. Lovely to fall asleep to. I think this is the best site in the whole area, and it got wonderful light as the sun was coming up in the morning. You really only could have fit one tent in the spot I chose, but there were plenty of areas nearby, where you could spread out several tents if you were with a big group.

And though I was a bit worried about how challenging the hike out the next day would be, since it was quite a lot of uphill, at altitude, it was actually quite easy. I didn't even get winded. Anyway, if I was going to do it again this trip again, I'd start out for Glen Aulin in the morning, drop my pack at a site, and then continue hiking down to Waterwheel Falls (another 3 miles beyond Glen Aulin). Then, I'd come back up to Glen Aulin to camp for the night. I think it would also be lovely to start Friday night hiking up to May Lake (only 1.2 miles -- pictures of that tomorrow), then hike Saturday from May Lake to Glen Aulin, and Sunday from Glen Aulin back to the parking lot. You'd have to find a shuttle or other ride back to your car, but that's apparently not too difficult up there.

This was my first time in a long time backpacking alone, and it was lovely, if a bit lonely. But clearly I wasn't miserable.


P.S. Since I was traveling alone, many of the pictures of me from this trip were taken with my favorite new camera accessory -- the GorillaPod. Have you guys seen these things? They're amazing! It's basically a go-anywhere tripod. They're made up of a bunch of ball-and-socket joints, so they're completely bendable. You screw it into the bottom of your camera and then you can set it up anywhere to take a picture -- I put mine on totally uneven ground, around a tree branch, etc, and got some GREAT pictures. Completely worth the $25 bucks I paid on sale at REI a few weeks ago.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Just Like Heaven

This is where I spent Wednesday night. 


This is where I had my coffee Thursday morning.   



This is where I spent Thursday night.



Friday and Saturday were similarly spectacular.   

Some days, I just completely and totally love my life.   Many, many more pictures to follow. 


Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Daily Dose of Gratitude #51

1. The fact that the National Park Service Web Site for Big Bend National Park has a page called "How NOT to Die in the Desert."

2. Today, Tuesday, is Friday for me this week. . .

3. . . . because I'm going camping for a long, glorious 5 days.

4. A lovely, laughter-filled dinner last night with an ex-boyfriend whom I hope will become a current friend.

5. Fixing my non-burning campstove all by myself, while neither causing said stove to explode nor setting myself or anything else on fire.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Dear Dude

Dear Dude,

Perhaps including several pictures of yourself with a dead deer on your online dating profile is not the best way to pick up chicks. I'm just sayin' is all.

xoxo,

Chris

Daily Photo

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Daily Photo


Campfire in the mountains, May '09

Monday, June 8, 2009

Daily Dose of Gratitude #50

1. Wuthering Heights

2. Cold Soba Noodles with Peanut-Sesame sauce and tons of green veggies. 

3. My shiny, wonderful, lovely new macbook. (My first new computer in 7 years!)  I think I'm in love. 

4. Being able to do push-ups for the first time in my life. I can do 20+ girl-style ones at a go, now!

5. A phone message from my "baby" sister, who never calls me :-)  She's not technically a baby at all, since she turns 24 (!!!) in a couple months, but she'll always be my baby sister! 

6. The tropical smell in the air around my office lately.  I think it might be the honeysuckle growing on the fence in our parking lot, but it's like being in Hawaii :-) 

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Daily Dose of Gratitude #49

1. Scoring several awesome vintage sheets at the thrift store -- perfect fabric for making cute summer dresses.

2. Deciding to take some time off from dating all the freakin' time to get myself sorted. (And the fact that this leaves me more time for other things I love -- sewing, knitting, cooking, reading :-)

(Sorry folks, that means no more "Dear Dude" posts for a while. Which is probably better, anyway, since at least one of the dudes in question discovered this blog. Ooops.)

3. A really productive afternoon at work.

4. Watermelon

5. Walking into my boss's office eating said watermelon and having him ask me if I was eating it because it matched my outfit today (green and white skirt, pink shirt :-)

Monday, May 18, 2009

Daily Dose of Gratitude #48

1. Seeing The Avett Brothers live. What a fantastic show! And they played my favorite song:



2. That they were playing at the Fillmore. I used to go to tons of concerts, back when I ran a record store, but I rarely go anymore. Mostly because I have very little tolerance at this point for being packed in like sardines with hundreds of stupid drunk frat boys, drowning in clouds of pot smoke. But this show was AWESOME-- small, historic venue, a very excited but mellow crowd, and we snagged a prime viewing spot on the balcony. And you get a free poster after the show at the Fillmore. And apples! (I could do without the $12 beers, though. What a rip-off!)

3. 30 degrees cooler today than yesterday. Thank goodness!

4. A really good friend, in town now for the whole summer :-)

5. Fresh, cool sheets and sleeping with all the windows open and the hum of the ceiling fan.

Monday, May 11, 2009

How I spent my Saturday night

I spent Saturday night in the mountains, sitting in front of this:


Do I look happy or what? It was so exactly what I needed.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Dear Dude #5

Dear Dude,

I know that getting dumped sucks. Really, I do. I've BEEN there. It's hard. It hurts your feelings. It makes you feel less-than-worthy. I GET it. That being said, there are graceful and not-so-graceful ways to handle a break-up. You, my friend, went decidedly toward the ungraceful when I broke things off with you last week. With that in mind, here is some friendly advice for next time some lovely lady decides she doesn't want to see you anymore:

1. We have only been dating for 3 weeks. It is WAY too soon for you to be (and I quote) "devastated" about us not seeing each other anymore. Seriously, dude, I have a carton of eggs in my fridge that is older than our relationship!

2. Begging me to reconsider won't work. No one looks good when they beg. And, in fact, it really just confirms my decision to dump your overly-sensitive and dramatic butt.

3. Asking me "Did one of your friends tell you to do this?" in an accusatory tone? Really, really, really lame. SUPER lame. I am a grown-ass woman. I don't need my friends to tell me when I need to get the hell out of a bad relationship, thankyouverymuch. Also, see #2 above and add "paranoid" to the list of reasons I dumped you.

4. IM'ing me multiple times to tell me you miss me in the week after I tell you I don't want to see you anymore? Please see #2 above. Forcing me to block you on Google chat, un-friend you on Facebook, and put your phone # into my "don't even let the phone ring" category is NOT the way to win back my heart. I 'm just sayin'

5. Oh yeah, and a bonus piece of advice, just 'cos I'm feeling generous: lying about your age, height, or both on your online dating profile = DUMB. Hint -- I'm going to figure it out sooner or later. I mean, maybe you can manage to hide your driver's license from me for a lifetime, but ain't no way in hell I'm gonna believe you're 5 foot 8 when you're wearing running shoes and I, in all my 5 foot 6 glory, STILL tower over you. In my bare feet.


XOXO,

Chris

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Daily Does of Gratitude #47

1. The fact that people from Saskatchewan called hooded sweatshirts "bunny hugs."

2. A long walk around my neighborhood in last night's unseasonably warm, pink-lemonade colored dusk.

3. Avocado on sandwiches.

4. Breakfast burritos.

5. T. gets home today.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Daily Dose of Gratitude #46

1. A lovely afternoon at the beach with a good friend.

2. It actually being WARM enough on a San Francisco beach to lay around in a bikini for the whole afternoon.

3. The satisfying pop when you open English pea pods to get at the peas inside.

4. A rare night -- warm enough to sleep with every window in the house open without getting cold (It was still 66 in my house when I woke up this morning -- warmer than I usually have the heat set for overnight!)

5. This song by Lisa Hannigan:



In fact, this might be my favorite music video EVER.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Sunday, April 12, 2009

You change your mind like a girl changes clothes



This weekend has been kind of emotionally ridiculous. I can't even begin to put it together into any kind of coherent narrative. (I just quoted Katy Perry in my subject line -- THAT'S the kind of weekend I've had).


Stupid things:

1. Completely frying my face in the sun 2 days before I have to be on camera for videos that will go out to thousands of kids. Lovely.

2. Boys. Especially ones who are hot and then cold all of a sudden. And, while I'm at it, ones who don't get the hint that I broke things off for a good reason and I ain't gonna change my mind.


Good things:

1. I did at least have one of those lovely days where you just go where the spirit takes you. I went to the Marin Headlands for the first time:


Ocean Beach, too:


And Land's End at Sunset. Gorgeous!


EDT 5/12/09 to eliminate some content I decided I really didn't want out there.