Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Christmas in America

Even in practically perfect Portland, the holiday season is upon us. The consumer culture is alive and well. IF only people would turn off their TVs to the normal crap.

I noticed a sign of the Apocalypse on Thrusday when looking through the paper and seeing that the Factory Stores were opening at midnight on Black Friday to get an early jump on the national chains like Kohl's that were waiting til 4 a.m. to give away their best holiday deals.

On second contemplation, I think it makes sense... if you're coming home from Family, you may just want to cleanse your holiday cheer with some shopping in the middle of nowhere.

I say all of this in gest becuase I sent Susan out with Emma and Dorreen and had a wallet and socks on my list of things she should get at the half off sale at Fred Meyer.

Transit Signal Priority and Me

I am putting on a Webinar for the Institute of Transportation Engineers next week. We had a trial run of the technology today. The presentation was mostly put together and I tested it at Portland State University (covering for Rob Bertini in his class today). I had to come up with a quiz and that was interesting, sort of like teaching my summer course.

I spent a little time googling the various transit signal priority documents that are available on the web and I wonder how many engineers and planners learn what consultants and others have done by doing that. I am sure the future generation of engineers are much more saavy about that then the more established folks of my age.

It could be something I learned about in graduate school, the fact that there is usually someone else that has information out there and when you have something to contribute it isn't always very clear what it is to others. What's significantly important is how you craft your message and how you communicate. Something to work on.

Week After Thanksgiving

Twas the week after Turkey Day and all through the house, not a creature was stirring not even a mouse. We finally rid ourselves of our basement friend. He ended up in the gutter, which is a little odd to think about how that could happen. I guess it is better not to think of it.

We enjoyed the visit and family time on the long weekend with the Leftleys. I tried to take them to the Aerial Tram, but it was closed. We rode the Streetcar into downtown and saw the Pioneer Square Christmas Tree, went into Macy's and tried to visit Santa (he was on a break), and rode the Max and the Streetcar back to the car.

It was sort of a lazy day for the McConnells and Susan. When we got back they were off to Grand Central, I guess they needed to get out.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Southeast Soccer


Super Turkey 07

Susan just got back from New Seasons having picked up the 21.2 lb Diestel Farms Turkey. The thing is huge. Abby got a kick out of poking and prodding it while Susan helped thaw it a bit. It wasn't supposed to be frozen, but I guess it sat in the fridge in the back a little too long there at the store.

Abby was very curious about the bird and was asking about the bones and where the wishbone was and why its neck was separate. When we went to bed tonight she asked why I did not want to touch the turkey and I told her that I didn't like animals "that" much and she said, "but Dad you like Beavers". I told her that was a little different and that we could talk about it in the morning.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Yet Another Cycling Mention related to Portland

NY Times covers Portland's Bike Culture. I appreciate that I am living in a City that is doing cool things.