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Chicago, Illinois is one of my favorite places. I also love Evanston which is just north of Chicago.

Written By: Gary on June 4, 2006 10 Comments

So we met at Piece Pizzeria there was a bunch of us. Kevin (with wife Katie and brother and future sister-in-law ), Dave, Jenny, RW and wife, Kelly, Ariana, Steve and Susan, and myself.

Logo from Dave at Blogograpy.comWe had all kinds of pizzas, I mostly ate the standards and the weirdest was cheese with mashed potatoes (I wasn’t as fond as some of there others were). Chatted, took photos and more. After we were there for a while most of us left and went to a tequila bar but I don’t think anyone got any tequila, maybe I’m wrong and it was just a bar (it turns out it was the Salud Tequila Lounge) and chatted some more…

It was great meeting everyone and I look forward to doing it again some time. It was night to see some faces and expressions and voices. I’ll be able to put some of that in my head as read their blogs in the future. I’ve met a few bloggers before but never as a group so I’m game for another, didn’t get to chat with everyone very long but I’ll be reading their blogs to fill in some gaps. I need to get a few missing addresses still. I think Dave came the farthest (from Washington) and I was the second (from Michigan) and I think everyone else was within a few hours…

I got to chat with Jen and Ariana more as we were taking the same train and it was a bit of a walk to get there.

Sunday (today actually) I’m going to meet Dave and Jen to go to the museum (which one escapes me right now) but I probably should get to bed so I can do that. I need to get my stuff together too since I’ll be heading out of town from there.

I’ll have to check out the photos later and see how they came out.

Written By: Gary on June 4, 2006 No Comment

This was my view at lunch!

Originally uploaded by garylapointe.

So this is what I got to look at while I was sitting on the pier at the beach eating my lunch.

It was a really great view of the city.

It was a pretty good burger too :)

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Written By: Gary on June 3, 2006 No Comment

I remote posted the flamingo photo from my phone!!! I had problems getting this to work before but it seems okay now!

I do have issues with the typing on the phone though, it should say “At the Lincoln Park Zoo in Chicago” (I don’t have remote blog editing working)
I’ve fixed it now.

Written By: Gary on June 3, 2006 No Comment

VERY PINK Flamingos

Originally uploaded by garylapointe.

At the Lincoln Park Zoo in Chicago.

The flamingos were very very pink. Thought they were worthy of a photo…

Written By: Gary on June 2, 2006 3 Comments

Miscdavecago-2So off to Chicago to meet some bloggers. A few I read all the time, a few that read me, a few I’ve read a few times and I’m sure there will be some introductions between strangers. Plus I know a few bringing some non-bloggers. It looks like it will Kevin, Dave, Jenny, RW, Chanakin, Mocha and me. (I’ll update this if anyone else shows).

I’m actually on my way there now (blogging courtesy of my new Treo 700p with BlueTooth wireless connection to my PowerBook; review forthcoming) eating at a Wendy’s somewhere along the way. I’m staying at Heather’s (new blog under construction), who’s not coming but coincidentally is the one who got me into blogging.

That guy on the logo is cartoon Dave from Blogography he’s in from Seattle. I think everyone else is semi-local (other then me from Dearborn/Detroit), but I could be mistaken. I’ll post more on the meet later…

Written By: Gary on March 8, 2006 One Comment

Tori fade to redThis is a little different it’s Tori Amos: Fade to Red a video collection and commentary from the Apple iTunes store. It looks good, I’m not just sure if I want to buy it and it’s not DVD quality. Most of it’s old stuff that I already have on video or DVD. I guess I should check to make sure, it’s possible I already have all of it…

They have all the other Tori Amos music, videos and they actually have a few live concert “bootlegs” too (Boston, Manchester, London, Denver, LA and Chicago).

(Later) And now I see that Amazon carries the Tori Amos – Video Collection: Fade to Red DVD. So I guess it’s not as different as I though (although, it did come out less than a month ago). But that’s full screen and it’s a few bucks cheaper too, but I’ll still need to see if I actually need any of the videos.

Oh, who am I kidding, it’s Tori, I need to have it…

Written By: Gary on November 20, 2005 No Comment

McribtourSo there is a site protesting the use of boneless pigs for fast food (bonelesspigs.org). It’s a marketing thingy for McDonald’s who it looks like its canceling the McRib sandwich and marketing it as a farewell tour (and we know how those go, I think I saw the Rolling Stones farewell (or was it a reunion tour in ’93). This is a problem as it is my personal favorite and it doesn’t look like the tour is in my neighborhood. If anyone hears that they are coming to Michigan please let me know (Toledo is close enough and/or it’s an excuse to go to Chicago).

Found at the Fire Ant Gazette.

It’s a funny thing with McDonald’s and the extra domains. I remember way back when when they didn’t even own their own domain and someone did a Wired article about names and trademarks. They tried to give it to McDonald’s and couldn’t even get anyone interested at the time (which was 1994). Here’s a copy of the article (and another), they both seem to load a little slow but the first is all in one file.

I really regret not buying up more domain names. But back then it was $50 a year and a two year minimum. I didn’t have the cash and didn’t realize at the time that these were going to be worth money as the 1-800-NUMBERS of the the future (if not more so). I did know this is where the world was going and I was driving along at the right speed but I didn’t just know how cRaZy the who thing would turn out. I certainly missed that boat (the cash making boat). Tthe article also talked about the money making of squatting but they did say that evaluations on how this would be handled were occurring at the time.

Written By: Gary on July 13, 2005 No Comment

NWU MapSo this is where I was when I did the rock tour (see recent posts). It’s also where I was when I went rollerblading part of the time and where I just liked to relax. You can see in the zoomed in part (you did click on the thumbnail image?) that fuzzy edge near the water along Lake Michigan, it’s all these huge rocks (or big chunks of cement) along the shoreline. It’s probably about 40-60 feet of these along the shoreline to the water (if not more) and many are painted with these some of these sayings on them.

The right half of the map is Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois the left half is Evanston. They’re north of Chicago maybe 30-40 minutes from the downtown train station via the Metra (sixty if you take the L and have to switch trains). The L is probably just at the left side of the map and downtown Evanston is probably just south of this map. I really like the area I’ve had different friends live there (or near) at various times and it’s just always been comfortable to me.

Here’s a sketch of the campus so you can see it from a different perspective.

Written By: Gary on June 25, 2005 No Comment

So part of the Chicago trip was to go to NextFest and run by Wired Magazine and highly sponsored by GE. It was on Navy Pier and they had all sorts of new technologies on display. I’ll be doing multiple-posts about them over the next few days (weeks?).

Me, the guy into all the gizmos and gadgets did look at more than a few of them and say “Why?” They were just that far out that I couldn’t see any kind of application for them.

There were lots of cool space stuff: ships, robots, solar powered material and more.

A lot of VR related things, so of it new and not ready to go and some a bit old (several years) that I still haven’ seen hit the streets.

Motorola had a lot of phones, just about anything interesting was “out in Japan but not here, yet”, “concept only” or “years away” . Generally, in my experience, most phone demonstrations go that way.

More later….

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Written By: Gary on June 24, 2005 No Comment

weather reportIt got to be a hot one today. They said 97 today and I don’t think they were exaggerating! I’ve bounced all around today. Heather’s house was my base and I bounced between there and the paths by the water at Northwestern U and downtown Evanston each a few times. And I drank about 10 gallons of water, coca-cola and Gatorade. I also took a bunch of photos which I’ll add later once I get back to a WiFi zone (I’ll post a few and add a bunch to my flickr feed). It’s still pretty hot out even with the sun down (even with a breeze).

Written By: Gary on June 24, 2005 No Comment

So I had power all the way down here on the train (yes, I’m in Chicago now) which was a treat, if only they had WiFi. I plugged in the the laptop before I went to bed and the darn battery charger cord came out 1/8th of an inch and now the thing is dead. I was going to take it with me when I left for Evanston (my plan was to blog, eat and shop all day, with some rollerblading in there too). My battery lasts a decent time but it seems to take forever to charge… I’m just annoyed because it’s only out of juice because it slipped, not ’cause it ran out. Maybe I’ll have to be geekless part of the day.

Written By: Gary on June 22, 2005 3 Comments

So I’m going to be in Chicago soon mostly for fun. Any readers want get coffee / drink / something? It’s fun to put a voice / mannerisms to a person you’ve communicated with but never really met… Leave a comment or e-mail if interested.

I really need a way to keep track of who I read and where they are geographically or I’d just invite / say hi to the people I read but I can’t think of anyone in that area. I’m also in Philadelphia later this summer so if you’re from there and happen to stumble across this post be sure to say HI!

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Written By: Gary on June 15, 2005 No Comment

One of my favorite bands, The Indigo Girls, released Rarities this week. Eighteen tracks of odd stuff. Demos, different mixes, live cuts, EP versions and some tracks I don’t know if they’ve ever been released (like Ramblin’ Round featuring Ani DiFranco). If you get it at the iTunes store it comes with 2 bonus tracks.

I’ve probably seen them at least a dozen times not just all over Michigan (Auburn Hills, Clarkston, OU, MSU, Mt. Pleasant, Ann Arbor, Ypsilanti) but I’ve seen them in Chicago, Philadelphia, Milwaukee and I’m sure some places I didn’t think of here…

Written By: Gary on April 28, 2005 One Comment

Anyone happen to see Anna Nalick in Chicago tonight at Borders? If so, two three questions: How many songs did she play? Anthing not on Wreck of the Day? and (of course) how was she?!?

Written By: Gary on April 19, 2005 One Comment
1. Where Do You Visit The Most On Vacation?:
Probably Florida, the Miami (pardon me, the South Beach area) and Ft. Lauderdale area. Haven’t been there in a while but it’s got sun and good roller blading. I’ve probably been to Florida the most especially counting other locations. I’ve been to Washington D.C. a lot but mostly for work. I’ve been to Chicago and Toronto more than a few times but those are usually quick trips and don’t require much planning. I’ll make Florida be my final answer!
2. What’s Your Idea Of A Dream Vacation?:

A town with water and a beach and lots of time to relax (and A/C in the hotel room). Not too much noise, not too much time to wait in a line for anything…
3. Ever Been To Disney World or Disneyland?:
Yes. As a kid and again when I was 18 or 19, it’s okay. It’d be more fun if I had my own kids to take.
4. What Has Been Your Favorite Vacation So Far?:
My last few vacations have been great London and Costa Rica. What I really liked about them was very little travel, didn’t keep changing hotels and towns and such, just mostly hung out in one spot. I’d probably give Costa Rica the higher rating since there was sun and beach and a lot more relaxing.
5. Have You Taken A Cruise?:
Yes, but I was only 15 so I don’t really think I got all the benefits from the trip.

From Chick Chat.

Written By: Gary on February 5, 2005 2 Comments

So I was just listening to Today’s Podcast and they were talking about the word cover with Brian from Coverville. The part I’m thinking of is as they were talking they start digressed to talking about visiting states and what counts as a visit. We disscussed this among friends before so I thought this was interesting (Brian wasn’t to visit all 50 by the time he is 40). A layover in an airport doesn’t count, you must leave the airport and do something, he said getting a meal was enough. I liked the meal concept as counting as a visit.

Here’s a question though — I’ve ridden the train from the State of Washington to Chicago, do I get to count all the states I’ve ridden through? I may have seen a lot through the window, we even got off the train to run and get some munchies (from a store, not the train station), but I probably slept through most of a state at night. The states I saw sure seem like they’d count more than just getting a meal in some other state just to check off your checklist…

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Written By: Gary on October 17, 2004 No Comment

So I Roller-bladed all over “downtown” Evanston today and got some good breakfast McThingy to eat at Einstein Bros.

Then I went up towards Northwestern and bladed around campus and they were having a huge run for breast cancer awareness month. It was chaos there! It was fun to watch and I got to sit down by Lake Michigan and see the water, hear the waves and see Chicago to the south. I love the campus there and the view is always so nice, I just wish it had been warmer out…

All that and I was done by noon.

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Written By: Gary on October 14, 2004 One Comment
1. When’s the last time you went on vacation? Where’d you go?
London, England. Short vacation – Chicago/Evanston, IL (which I’m currently en route to).
2. What’s your favorite mode of transportation to get to/from/go on vacation? Plane? Train? Boat?
I love the train! It’s a mile from my house. Today I left my house at 5:25 for the 5:34 train. Parked 100 yards from the train. And guess what? We left at 5:34!!!
3. How important are vacations for the human spirit? Do you think it’s healthy for someone to go 20 years without a vacation? Why/why not?
I need them. I think that some people don’t, it just depends.
Bonus Question for Comments: What’s your ideal vacation/time off from real life?
I really liked my last trip to Costa Rica. Mostly staying in one place not running around crazy from place to place. It might have to happen again this winter.

From 3x Thursday

Written By: Gary on August 22, 2004 No Comment

So yesterday we got everyone together after Heather’s Ordination. Back at Mom’s (hers) to get everyone together, and I mean everyone. Heather knows people from all over and there were people from everywhere in the state, nearby states and even some really far ones. A few kids running around and a ten-month old baby, LaLa (short for Lavender), that I adopted for the weekend.

Then today she did the service at 8am and 10am (most of us went to the 10) and she was wonderful. Then a dozen of us went out to eat and we started our way home…

Heather is off to Evanston, IL to work for Northwestern as a campus minister. She’ll probably be living no farther than a block or three from where she lived when she went to seminary at Seabury. Evanston is one of my favorite towns, I almost always include it in my visits to Chicago (and I don’t always include Chicago into my Evanston visits). And I can take the train most of the way there!

Written By: Gary on May 15, 2004 No Comment

These questions are from Laura at the saturday-8.

1. today i am going to see the movie “troy,” as it stars my favourite actor of all time, the british sex god sean bean (says laura). are you planning on seeing it? why or why not?
Not really. It looks really long. I’d like to see the Trojan Horse scene though (duh!).
2. the other day i purchased gas for $2.07 per gallon. i about threw up. what is the current gas price in your area? (please specify grade)
I put in 87 octane. It’s just gone over the $2.00 mark, which just kills me. I’m thinking I was seeing $2.03 and $2.07, this was the Deaborn (Detroit, MI) area.
3. sean bean is my lust, and the german actor thomas kretschmann comes in at a close second. who are your first and second actor/actress “loves”?
Liv Tyler: ever since Stealing Beauty and Mary Louise Parker: ever since Fried Green Tomatoes. I’ll add Julia Stiles (but I don’t know what I first saw her in) to that list too, since #5 just made me think of her too…
4. i am going to canada via syracuse, ny in july, and had to purchase my tickets WAAAAAAY early because we’re afraid the ticket prices will go up dramatically due to the rising oil prices. are you travelling this summer on a vacation?
I keep thinking I need to make some plans. Chicago? Toranto? London?
5. is there any movie this summer that you’re looking to see this summer, or any books you want to read that are going to be printed & released this summer? tell us about them…
I’m looking forward to Spiderman 2, which is funny since I wasn’t looking that forward to the first and it wasn’t that incredible. I’ve been liking Will Smith’s movies so maybe I, Robot will be good. I just saw a preview for The Borne Identity sequel (Borne Supremacy?) looks fun too.
6. what is your favourite vacation destination, and why?
Costa Rica! It’s warm, relaxed and it’s got two oceans! It’s really enjoyable, the not knowing Spanish is a little troublesome sometimes but dealable. The people are friendly and it’s warm.
7. have you heard about netflix.com? if so, have you joined/are you planning to join, and why/why not?
I’ve tried it a few times before. It’s excellent if you watch a lot of movies, I should give it a try again, it’s been a while. I liked it better when it was just individual rentals. (For those who don’t know what it is: $20 a month gets you three DVD rentals as soon as you return one, they send out the next on your list. Postage is included).
8. are you a good flier? i have problems on takeoff, but landing and flying are no problem.
Flying is generally no problem (a little air sick, but rarely). It’s dealing with the airports and security that makes me crazy, showing up two hours early for a ninety minute flight is counter-productive. I love the train, just show up a few minutes before, no parking problems, lots of room, very relaxinf.
Written By: Gary on April 23, 2004 One Comment

Guess who’s playing in Chicago this weekend?!?

Guess where I’m going this weekend?!?

I think the last time I saw them it was via Evanston also. Heather and I are going, we’ve seen them quite a few times: East Lansing, MI (twice); Rochester, MI; Philadelpia, PA; Ypsilanti, MI; Milwaukee, WI and I’m sure a time or two other than that. (Heather, can you think of any others?)

Written By: Gary on April 4, 2004 No Comment

I wish I hadn’t gone to see this. I wish I had waited for the DVD. Why? buterflyeffect Because if I had waited for the DVD I could replay the few scenes I had questions about over and over again. And more importantly I could see the deleted scenes; I’m certain there are at least two and they would answer my other few questions. Why? Becuase the movie takes care of all the little details and I’m sure they didn’t forget these few, I figure they were editied out and I have to know the rest because I enjoyed this movie so much. BUT it’s not even out on DVD yet! This was a great flick.

You need to understand two things: Chaos Theory and Time Travel (both relativly simple concepts, not).

  1. Time travel – If you travel into the past don’t interfere with anything you may screw up the future. I.E. don’t go to watch your parents meet for the first time since just being there to observe you may do something to influence the outcome. (Almost a Heisenberg/Schroding dilemma which is you will influence the outcome).
  2. Chaos Theory – It is said that the flapping of a butterfly’s wings in Chicago can create a hurricane in Peking. I.E. If you stop and buy gum on the way to watch your parents meet, it may be the last pack of gum that your mother-to-be can’t buy and now when she meets your dad-to-be she has bad breath and he doesn’t ask her out and you vanish in a puff of smoke.

It’s a great movie, it’s my favorite movie concept, time-travel, and as such it offers many what ifs. The only downside, it was kind of violent and I almost want to say it was in an unnecessary way, but I’m sure that without it, it might have changed how I viewed the movie.

I have to also say I laughed the absolute hardest I’ve ever laughed in a movie in my life. One scene was so ironic it hit me all the way to my funny bone. I hope I used ironic correctly (I think it’s ironic that most people use the word ironic incorrectly, I hope I used it right the third time too).

Written By: Gary on March 14, 2004 No Comment

I don’t know where the time has gone… I’ve been working on a few projects and things but not my blog (actually a little, just not stuff you’ve seen yet. I’ve been at one of my favorite conferences MACUL did a presentation (that I’ve never done before) that went well. Missed two Liz Phair concerts (wasn’t feeling well so I couldn’t do to the drive to Chicago and back), she did a regular concert and played at the Apple Store the next day.

So since I didn’t go there I didn’t get to see Heather either… But she’s in England with Nan for the so she might have some extra interesting posts this week. Finally bought an Xbox to play / hack around with, trying to install Linux, no success yet, but it’s been fun (anyone in the Detroit/Dearborn area who can offer me some help…?). Reading some books which I never seem to remember to comment on. The EXTRA nice part is it’s been sunny the last few days and that’s always nice in the winter!

Written By: Gary on February 7, 2004 No Comment

Here’s all the states I’ve traveled to. Stops at airports don’t count (and I didn’t count the states I went through when I traveled from Seattle to Chicago by train). I might be wrong about some of those gaps in the North East. Heck, from the map I’n not even sure what states those gaps are.

I’m thinking my next state to fill in might be New Mexico, I’ve always wanted to go to Roswell.

Another idea stolen from Heather’s blog.

Create your own visited states map.

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